Saturday, March 9, 2013

"I'm the first person to ever turn 30." -everyone who ever turned 30.

(If you're an agent, manager, or casting director visiting my website for the first time. I'm 26. I look 23 and I can play a highschooler if its 'Glee' but not if its the new '90210.')

I'm 26 and I would murder these donuts. 
In the year leading up to my 30th birthday, everyone in their 30’s said the same thing, “Oh! You’re gonna love your 30’s. You’re more comfortable in your own skin and you know more. They’ve been the best years of my life!” Frankly, I always thought, ‘Well, that sounds like something an old person would say.’ My favorites have been the 25-year-olds who would say, “I can’t wait to turn 30! 30 is the new 21!” That sounds like something someone with 5 amazing years left would say. Eh.

Barbie's just getting pregnant and she's like, 70. Also, this is weird. 
So, for a year, I thought I would take advantage of the time I had left and I did a lot. I started a blog, I became a stand-up comedian, (debatable title but its on my facebook page and website now, so I’m going with it) I did a lot of karaoke, and I ate a lot of kale. I even attempted a Christmas album (Look out X-mas 2013.) As the months dwindled down and we welcomed 2013, it was as if I had been slapped in the face with my failures. I forgot I was ever successful at anything and was convinced that if I hadn’t been impregnated accidentally by now, I probably could not have children. I paid far too much attention to the “Turning 30” facebook posts made by my internet friends. Things like, “I’m so happy to be turning 30! I have an amazing career! I have amazing children! I have an amazing marriage! I’ve been to several countries! I’m on a juice cleanse! I booked a role on Criminal Minds! I was on the Price is Right! I’m so blessed to be 30!” This was very depressing. I could not make any of those statements. Never the less, I was determined to make 2013 and the year I turned 30 the best ever.  It was time to make plans! Further my career! Think about how to fit a child around my inevitable sitcom regular role (because I’m very cute and, despite what you’ve heard, that’s all it takes to be successful in Hollywood) and maybe a 2nd cat!  And a wedding! When you’re almost 30 and with a guy who’ll do, you MUST get married! I needed to write more, book comedy shows, take casting workshops, do agent showcases, lose 10 pounds! Network! JUICE CLEANSE!!!!!

 I had 2 months before I was to turn 30, so this was a lot of pressure. So, I did what I always do when faced with a lot of pressure… I took naps. I took A LOT of naps. I beat myself up every time I napped. I beat myself up every time I didn’t make it to yoga class. I beat myself up every time I ate a non-fibrous carb. I would beat myself up every night I didn’t write. My last blog post says its part of a Trilogy! I’ve got news for you, the other two parts don’t exist! I NEVER WROTE THEM! I beat myself up every time I had a drink because “I didn’t deserve it.” (I actually quit drinking for 30 days on January 1st….  Hardest 8 days of my life. “Oh, good idea, Andrea. Put, yet another qualifier on your behavior to beat yourself up over.”) I never wanted to go out because “I should be at home, writing or organizing something or in a class or booking a show.” All in preparation for my 30’s! But, I would just nap. Needless to say, I sleep in the face of self-induced pressure and I was not very much fun to be around. I would express these feelings to people and they would say, “But you’re following your dreams! And that’s amazing!” It’s hard to feel good about life when you’re day job is to ensure David Caruso gets his ketchup and you know Tim Roth's wife likes her decaf black. I know people getting Doctorates for goodness sake! As the days until my birthday grew fewer, even the pressure to celebrate it began to overwhelm me. “Are you going to have a party?!?” Friends would ask. I would respond with whimpers and “maybe a brunch or something?” (For the record, I never had that brunch. It was just too, too much.) I decided on a birthday trip to Vegas with my boyfriend because truthfully, it meant that I would be out of town and I wouldn’t have to put some sort of event together. (And I LOVE planning events and even more, I love celebrating me.) It was clear. I was having a really hard time turning 30.

A shot of me turning 30 in Vegas. 
Hey. Guess where is a terrible place to go when you’re unhappy with life and you’re turning an age you don’t want to turn? Vegas. That’s where. My best advice regarding Vegas is: Try to keep your eyes closed during the day time. That shit’s sad. The final two days before my birthday were spent losing money gambling and drinking drinks that were gross at the Hard Rock. (The Hard Rock might win my award for douchiest place on the planet. I did not have a bartender without a Mohawk.) This was not going to work. I was not going down without a fight. I awoke on the morning of my birthday and made the decision to be happy about it. That day, I was going to do exactly what I wanted to do and I was going to enjoy it. I saw sharks, I saw original Warhol paintings, I had a Filet, I had a super snooty Hipster cocktail called ‘Remember the Maine,’ I got not one, but two souvenir Tiki glasses, had DONUTS, and I spent that evening with some of the most important people in my life. One of which, included my future (at some point) brother-in-law who said something, drunkenly to me that I will probably never forget. He said, “Your life. Your life out there in LA. Its pretty good. Like, really good. It’s a good little life. We think about our visit there with you and it was so fun to live that good life with you for 3 days. You gotta sweet life.”  (A rough recollection but its close and it was so sincere and wonderful…. Because he was hammered.)

It has been 8 days since I turned 30 and I’ve thought about what he said every day. The life he was referring to is pretty good. LA has been really good to me. It is a bustling, diverse, beautiful city with beautiful weather and the beach! I have TWO local produce stores. (One is Jewish and one is Mexican, so it really just depends on what I’m in the mood for.) I have made so many wonderful friends. All I do is think about the many different ways I can perform and do what I love. I dream and every day those dreams get bigger as I surpass my own expectations. I am surrounded by the most talented people in the world. Ok, so my day is spent slinging steaks to weirdoes, but it’s consistent and supports me fully and is balanced out by the chances I get to go slinging jokes to weirdoes at night. I’ve got a love and a cat and brother who keeps having really cute babies that I can spoil. SO, I CAN’T spend my money on traveling the world right now, or shop a ton, or buy a home, and I probably won’t have children for a really long time, but no one has ever regretted fully leaping off the cliff for their dreams, right? I certainly haven’t yet. And hell, some people don’t even have time to nap! I can take as many as I want! I’ve had the “respectable” career and the home in the suburbs and the Costco membership…. And even though it sounds really good right now because I could use a huge tub of pretzels and a retirement plan, I didn’t want it. I didn’t want it so bad, that I packed up everything and left. So, I’m quitting my bitching.

30 is good. For the last 8 days, I have truly never felt so “comfortable in my skin.” Also, I’ve got 10 awesome years before I turn 40. That will really suck.