Block 774: September 6, 2015


Woke up this morning feeling slightly overwhelmed. I have so much to do before I’m in New York next week!

Yeah, a week from now, I’ll be in New York City again.

Date: September 6, 2015

Crane: 774

Days Spent on Project: 929

Location: NW Portland, OR

Person I would have sent it to: TBD

Music I listened to while sewing: Back to Carly Rae Jepsen… nothing deep today, just some amazing pop music.

Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: Thinking about yesterday, it’s obvious to me- and a few other people that have kept up with me in the last year- how much I’ve realigned myself and changed. I am in a better place.

I am aware that more than a year ago, I needed an escape from New York. I knew, even if I didn’t acknowledge it or admit it, that I felt trapped. I felt myself drowning. I wasn’t happy. I was confused. I was tired.

I also wasn’t UNhappy. I was just NOT content with the way things were going and where I was.

I wanted a break. I wanted some kind of relief.

And, when this job appeared on the horizon randomly and when this job was quickly offered to me, I took it as my Way Out. I was relieved to have a reason to leave. I was excited for what I thought was the Next Chapter in my career and life. Portland, I thought, was the answer.

And it was an answer, sure, but I don’t think it was The Answer that I felt I wanted.

Over the past year, as I’ve relaxed in some areas of life, I’ve been able to think about what I’m doing and what I want.

Moving here wasn’t supposed to be an end to my design career. It was supposed to help and supplement my design career, not kill it.

It was meant to be a chance for me to exercise the connections I had made in New York and elsewhere.

It was meant to be a chance to learn more about management- of people and shops and designers.

It was meant to be a chance for me to stop worrying about money.

After a 14 months, I’ve learned a lot. This has been a great chance to balance myself and reflect on my life and who I am and what I want.

But, if I stay here, there’s a good chance this theater will unintentionally kill my design career. Now that I’m here- and not in New York, getting New York experience- I’m not attractive as a designer. But, now that I’m a local designer in Portland, I’m facing resistance from other theater companies here who see me as working for “the big guy” in town… or as someone who moved here from elsewhere to take their work.

Here in Portland, I’m a shop manager, and I’m not sure I will be anything else.

As the theater moves forward, they are tightening budgets as much as they can. My ability to use resources from elsewhere is shrinking.

As they tighten budgets, they are looking to use “touring” productions, rather than realize their own work. It’s so much cheaper to bring a fully packaged show in, rather than use our resources to do something new or unique.

I’m learning a lot. I am.

I’m learning that this wasn’t The Answer. It was An Answer. And soon, I’m sure another answer will present itself and draw me elsewhere.

I don’t think I’m tethered here permanently. That isn’t a bad thing.

I need to acknowledge now that Portland has given me some things, but it is also NOT giving me others. And it’s okay to look elsewhere. Or go back in search of a better way of living in places that I’ve been before.

I mean, but who knows what Life has in store for us or you or me…

Okay, off to watch a rehearsal.


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