“And then one day you find, ten years have got behind you…”

~Jaws IV

I think I’m having my mid-life crisis. 

Over the past week, I’ve had a couple new dreams that are similar in theme. Before I describe them, a little backstory.

I do my best to take responsibility for all my actions in life. When I look back, I don’t point fingers and lay blame. I examine, see where I went wrong, and (hopefully) learn from my mistakes.

Case in point: I attended the Berklee College of Music.

Going in, I thought, “I’m gonna meet a couple musicians and become a rock star!” Because that’s how life works, right? Once there, I discovered it was more a technical school than an artistic one, and became quickly disillusioned. Instead of shifting gears and putting in the work I needed to in order to succeed, I slacked off, and eventually dropped out.

I could say, “That school sucks! It’s a money hole that doesn’t teach you how to be a musician,” but where does that get you? It’s not a wrong statement, but I could have pivoted away from what I wanted out of the school to what it offered and gotten some knowledge. Poor decision = mine.

Second example: Los Angeles. 

I went in thinking talent matters. I look back with the knowledge glad handing is the fuel Hollywood runs on.

Again, I could be bitter, but I choose to accept that I didn’t hang out at clubs and/or get to know enough people. That’s on me. I did my sets and went home; I should have been a part of the scene. Fault = mine.

So, that bit of exposition out of the way, back to my dreams.

Over the past week, I’ve had vague, loose dreams where I’ve gone back to both cities to get it “right” this time. Or, at least, that’s the plan. In the dream, it’s 2021, and I’m actively enrolling in school, or looking at an apartment in Los Angeles… Then, somewhere along the way, I remember, I’m a dad. I’m a husband. I have a family. I have the thought, I can’t just up and attempt to make right old mistakes; I’ve got to keep moving forward.

And then I wake up.

And I’m relieved. 

I’m relieved because I’m not interested in giving up the life I have in order to go attack old challenges with my new knowledge. That said, I have to admit to being torn. I can’t say I have regrets—because there’s no point in woulda-coulda-shoulda—but I have desires. While I have a personal life I love, my professional life is an exhausting burn slowly taking its toll.

When I started in this business, I never had delusions of grandeur. I never wanted to be (and I’m still not interested in being) Jim Carrey famous. TV, movies… none of that interested me. I like the stage. Standing on it, spitting jokes into a microphone, and hearing the laughter of the audience. So while I never had delusions of grandeur, I did have delusions: I thought that if you got on stage, sent people home saying, “That was great!” you’d get invited back. But celebrity trumps talent, and that’s the case even if your only claim to fame is having the words “As Seen On” in your biography, and I never got a TV slot.

(Which, again, is pretty much my fault.)

I have no clue what my dreams or my reactions to them are trying to tell me.

Some people believe dreams are a tie to the subconscious, and that we should have them examined, interpreted, and dissected and put under a microscope. Others say dreams are a response to the meal we ate before bed. I don’t know which is correct, I just know the fact I wake up relieved is probably a good sign. It means that despite the so very, very many mistakes I’ve made in my life, I still ended up here. 

And here ain’t so bad.

I just hope it gets (professionally) better.

Wanna help me along my way? Buy my newest book.

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Image by Comfreak from Pixabay.

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