Picking up from last time –
If it had been easy to take the internship, I probably would’ve done it anyway (despite my semi-jadedness so early on). However, I started running scenarios through my head. I had to assume that I could not work 5 out of 7 days most weeks, as those days would be totally dedicated to my internship. Could I make enough money in only 2 days a week to sustain me?
I didn’t think I could. And we’re assuming that I could’ve actually worked two days a week at a restaurant or whatever place would hire me (if they would even hire me) – that I wouldn’t be wiped out from long, long days on the show, and that I could actually get a part time job easily in Los Angeles.
(I’ve looked during certain down times for non-entertainment jobs in New York and LA, and every time I’ve had a tough time getting hired. I was overweight in cities where having a great body really helps. I don’t speak a foreign language in tourist capitals. I don’t have a college degree. I don’t have any wait staff experience. Sure, I like to think I’m pretty nice and pretty smart. But is that enough? So, we can’t assume that even if I’d been dying to work double shifts on both weekend days that I even would’ve been able to.)
I could have probably found a homeless shelter to live in, or possibly found people I could’ve stayed with, or I could’ve tried to survive in one of those Hollywood Dorms. I maybe could’ve gotten some government assistance, such as SNAP. I could’ve also had a food bill of practically zero with all the crafty on set. I also could’ve racked up credit cards and gone into debt.
Also, the hardest part of all of this was not only figuring out how I’d actually pay to live. It was the fact that in order to do the internship, I’d have to get college credit. I had enough credits at Berklee that I could’ve taken an internship – for something like $2,000 (for the credits).
The rest of it, I was almost willing to figure out. But $2,000 dollars just to work? Eesh, that seemed so ridiculous to me! (Don’t even get me started on internships for college credit.)
There were options. None of them looked spectacular to me at the time, but they existed. And sometimes I let my mind wander and think, “If I would’ve taken that internship, would I have moved up? Would I have met people who helped me find a real job on another scripted show? Would I be queen of the world now?” (That last one’s maybe not quite a serious question, but you get the gist.)
[Note: I originally drafted this over a year ago, but now I have a super fantastic job. So, maybe I’m on my way to queen of the world after all. ;)]
I can’t know. I’ll never know for sure. And I shouldn’t ever harp on it, as I didn’t do it. But that’s what I meant by sacrifice more. I had an opportunity. And at the time, I chose to believe it was too hard to make it happen.
So, what was the next step in my career? Find out next time.