My life has come to a halt.
I’m at a stand still.
A crossroads, have you.
It took me a few weeks to realize it, and today it finally hit me.
I need a change.
A BIG change.
A life change.
New York is WEARING me DOWN.
Which I hate to admit… but it’s absolutely true.
And it’s not necessarily that I don’t LOVE this city, because I do, with my whole heart. I just feel like there are things surrounding me here that are making me absolutely unhappy.
Right now I feel like I have nothing. Which… I know is a silly feeling… because I know I have A LOT.
But feel is the operative word here… I FEEL like I have nothing.
I feel like I have no one.
And while I KNOW this isn’t true… perhaps I can explain to my readers WHY I feel this way.
Let me preface this by saying that I’m in no way trying to throw anyone under a bus. This is me being truthful and honest, which is why I think my blog has such a strong readership: I don’t bullshit, and I never will.
This is simply my heart, bleeding for the world to read.
I know it’s risky, and several friends have expressed their concerns with the fact that I do this so openly, but this is me. Take it or leave it.
1. I feel like I am not loved as much as I love others
I had five friends show up to my last show in New York.
I thought that ALL my New York friends would come out. I had a big show in May that literally NO ONE showed up to, and it literally BROKE my heart… in half. Not many people knew this before now, but I think I cried for three straight days afterward. I was so hurt.
This last show, I told myself it would be different. It was FREE. It was on a Sunday at 7 pm (which I know is not the BEST time, but a lot of my friends in New York don’t have crazy work schedules).
I know, I KNOW people are busy. I know that people have lives and I KNOW that things get crazy when you least expect them.
But I thought I meant more to my friends.
I thought I was loved a little more.
I had a long talk with my dad the next day, and he told me not to let it get to me.
But it did.
Because I don’t often ask a lot of my friends. I’m not asking people to come out every week to see me perform. I’m not asking anyone to buy my CD. Fuck… I’ll give it to you for free!
This is the first reason for my recent “funk.”
2. I’m tired of rejection
Fuck… I made it to the top 180-200 singers for the last season of The Voice.
That’s pretty fucking cool.
But every time I go to an audition, I sing my ass off and then get a polite, “Thank you,” from the person conducting the audition.
No matter how thick your skin is in New York, rejection gets old. ESPECIALLY when you get so close to something and then it doesn’t work out. Most of the time, you don’t even get an explanation.
Honestly, I would rather have someone at an audition tell me I’m too fat for a role rather than telling me nothing. At least I would have a piece of mind about it.
Which leads me to my next point.
3. I’ve NEVER had such a bad body image.
I’ve NEVER dieted in my life before moving here.
I’ve never thought that I was anything but beautiful before I moved here.
This city fucks up your views of beauty, specifically due to weight.
I’ve straight up had “friends” tell me I could stand to lose some pounds.
Which, whatever… maybe I COULD stand to lose some weight, but I don’t think my weight has anything to do with the content of my character, or my talent.
I get it.
I’m a performer.
I’m expected to look a certain fucking way…
… but it fucking blows.
That shit drives me nuts.
4. Men in New York DO NOT like what Shannon Allen has to offer.
None of them.
I have “dated” “talked to” “flirted with” just about every different “type” of man you can imagine in New York City and most of them show interest immediately and then quickly lose interest.
I have NO IDEA what I’m doing wrong.
I have NO IDEA what they don’t like about me.
All I know is that I may as well be the fucking Grinch who Stole Christmas because straight men will not touch me with a 39 1/2 foot pole.
And please, spare me the, “Shannon, you should be focusing on your career, not men,” speech. I have ALWAYS been able to balance a social life and my professional career.
Work ethic has never been a problem for me.
In fact, I’m known for working myself so hard, that I go blind. LITERALLY I went partially blind in my left eye because I was so stressed.
5. I’m tired of not doing what I love for a living.
I work at a bookstore.
And go to auditions like crazy.
I’m sick of it.
My favorite thing is being at the bookstore and getting treated like shit by a customer and just thinking, “I went to college for six damn years, who the FUCK are you?!?!?”
Which obviously I never say….
But sometimes I would like to be really proud of what I do, and be able to tell people that I actually AM a performer… instead of a girl who works part-time at a bookstore just so she can have the flexibility to audition and perform shows when she can.
Which brings me to my next thought…
I’m thinking of moving.
(Cue everyone FREAKING OUT)
I might move away from New York for a while.
I’ve toyed around with a few cities: Cleveland (FREE RENT), LA, Orlando, Nashville, Austin…
I’m not saying any of this is necessarily going to happen… but it’s something I’m thinking very seriously about.
I’m going to visit Ashley in Orlando in two weeks and I have a few auditions lined up.
If I got a job working for Disney, I could perform for a living and possibly get my equity card.
Oh yeah… and live with my best friend and her husband.
I could think of worse things. (Please read the heavy sarcasm.)
I also have a few other things coming up in the next few months that could possibly yield a future for me.
New York will ALWAYS be here for me.
My youth, however, will not.
And if I want to have a sustainable career as a performer, I need to explore my options.
Because I don’t want to wake up when I’m 50 and regret not going after my dreams.
So life may take me in a different direction.
Until then… I hope I can get out of this terrible funk I’ve been in.
Shannon Rose Allen
PS: Thank you to my dad, brother, sister-in-law and Ashley for talking this out with me today. Once I was finally honest with how I felt, things fell a little bit more into place.
PPS: I miss Ro. I wish I could have talked to her about this today. 😦