I’ve found myself on many Dec. 31st lamenting and/or spiraling into the abyss of negativity, One only finds themselves in when mining their worth, values, and accomplishments from the last 365 days with a brief visit with your memory, lasting less than a minute. Or basically basing everything on the fact that perhaps you have absolutely nothing going on but Netflix and wine on Dec. 31st, which somehow means you never had anything going on for an entire year and “Oh God! –This is what the next year has in store?!”
I think most people are guilty of this very flawed thought process. I don’t think there are many i’ve come across or know who hasn’t at one point or another ended in this pool of darkness at the end of the year. I think it’s smart to reflect and write out a year in review. Something I’ve done for a while, but haven’t actually ever blog. And with that being said…
The last week, I’ve had moments of thinking. “Ugh. What a waste…whole year what do I have? What am I doing?” Of course I have plenty and unfortunately, I fell victim to the toxic idea that one must ALWAYS be doing something to be considered productive. When self-care is just as important which for me means, doing absolutely nothing. So whilst doing absolutely nothing, I failed to remember what happened to be the most cathartic moment of 2018 and perhaps since I graduated Grad School—
During my last semester of Grad school I had an instance with an agent who should have been a protector/teacher but use his position as a means to an end and in the process flagrantly cut me down as an artist in a way only a white man with power can. And I found myself at this persons’ Agency trying to present what I was made to believe was a person, an actor, an idea–caricature of myself to possibly hopefully be seen and deem worthy of representation. I didn’t get signed, I didn’t get ask back, I didn’t get a second thought. But what I did get was resolve and what my BF has explained to me– a grudge. I remember exactly what I thought afterwards— “He may have played a part in my rejection, they may not want me now, but I PROMISE you the day will come when they will want Bleu Beckford-Burrell and I’ll be happy to say “No thank you, she good.” Basically think, ‘Gone with the Wind’ when Scarlett says, “…I’ll never be hungry again!”
And you may have guessed it, seeing how this story is playing out. Recently, I was in the very same office, waiting to be seen (with the refreshments on deck). And this time, this time I was a person. This time I was received like an artist, a woman who is worthy, valuable, and ain’t got nothing to prove. This time they were asking for me. And me, this me…Bleu Beckford-Burrell was so damn proud to have grown, learn, and improve so damn much that I had the opportunity to make a promise I made to myself come true. Now, I didn’t tell anyone to Kiss My Ass because as I mentioned, I’ve grown and living off grudges is living in the past and this current version of me is all about what the future got in store. So yeah— one of the most meaningful moments for me this year was being solicited by Talent Agencies and having the knowledge, skills, talent and confidence to know those people never had the power for my success and greatness, I did.
My other top moments in less words would be…
- Realizing when you’re a semi-finalist/Finalist they tell you in your rejection.
- Getting Runner up for the Yale Drama Series Award.
- Winning one of the seats for Playwrights Realm Fellowship.
- Graduating for EST Youngblood writers group.
- Hitting the 2 year mark of being a playwright. (YEAH THAT SHIT CRAY)
- Traveling to London & Bath, Greece (Athens, Delphi, Islands) San Fran & Napa Valley all for the first time.
- Doing 5x more submission than I did my first year.
- Leveling up my relationship.
- Meeting new artist.
- Wrote several short plays, a full length, two one acts, and started my next full length, and wrote a badass pilot in four days.
- Getting a residency at Space on Ryder Farm and realizing why everyone is dying to get a spot there.
- And still having my friends and family being my biggest supporters.
- Learning and being comfortable asking for help.
2019 will have it’s own lessons and it’s own pitfalls. But one thing I’m absolutely certain of is it’ll be just as scary, exciting, and at times filled with crippling doubt brought on by fear. And I hope, I will be even more determine to shake that fear because it makes the wins and losses, less surreal and more a reality to be digested, consumed and translated into the wisdom I continue to want and gain.
Happy New Year!