Year in retrospect

Since my previous entry was kind of depressing, I’ve been wanting to write a more upbeat post for awhile now. I’ve been thinking a lot recently about where I was just a year ago and how much that has changed. I was trying to deal with a lot of stuff that had happened pre-grad school, and last year in general had been sort of up-and-down emotionally. But I think when the playwriting workshop portion of my MFA program ended, I sort of felt this void and started to feel really sad all the time again. The structure that the workshop classes had given me was sort of pulled out from under me, and I had no idea how to handle it. I was in summer classes, but it wasn’t the same.

I hit a real emotional low around mid- to late-June last year, and my playwriting class’s planned weekend getaway at our classmate’s summer lake house was coming up at the end of the month. My outlook tanked so much in the week leading up to it that I almost didn’t go. I even went so far as to officially cancel only to be talked back into it by my awesome classmates. When I look back, I always mark that weekend as the turning point in getting my life back in order. There was great people, great food, a lake, a rope swing, a hot tub, a trampoline, and lots of wine, among other things. And also a hammock. I feel like that weekend was when I finally got myself out of mere survival mode and into moving-forward mode.

One of the biggest changes was that over the July 4 weekend, I decided to follow in the footsteps of one of my friends and put up a profile on Match. 😛 It was the first time that the thought of potentially letting someone get close to me didn’t make me feel sick. Within a week of my profile being up, this super-awesome guy named Allan emailed me, and we met up in person on July 14. Now he’s sitting right next to me on the couch in the apartment that we share. And my two kitties are running around with his chubby cat and causing trouble. It’s definitely been a really good year.

I also, because I’ve been amazingly lucky this year, had a few steps forward with my writing. I completed my degree in January, so I now have an MFA to my name that I did not have a year ago. And I got an award-of-sorts by making the semifinals of the Kennedy Center’s Ten-Minute Play award (does it count as an award if you don’t actually make the finals? haha). A group of BU alums started up a workshop group so we could continue to hear actors read our work and get feedback from each other. AND I had my first-ever production just a few weeks ago. This time last year, I was just a nervous girl who had just finished her playwriting classes and was worried that without that structure I’d never be able to see my work developed again.

This year has been awesome. It’s something I can look back on when rejections seem to be pouring in endlessly as encouragement to keep going. My playwriting classmates and I have recently started planning the second-annual weekend at the lake. I definitely won’t be almost backing out of this one.

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