It's hard to complain when your work is play
Jun 26, 2012 06:00 am |
It’s hard to believe I have officially been in Barrhead one month. Time sure does fly when you’re having fun.
I’ve found myself so busy I’ve hardly had time to explore the town yet. I had visions of myself going into each and every shop on Main Street, cruising down back country roads to find picturesque spots for some extra curricular photography, even decorating my barren apartment. However, my work schedule has had other ideas about what would consume my time.
Some people might drag themselves to work with a heavy heart on the weekend after working through the week. I’ve found mumbles and grumbles are often a tempting option for the overworked. But for me, this just isn’t the case.
Although sometimes the bounce in my step may be a tired one after working many long days, evenings, and weekends, something unavoidable in this line of work, my heart is far from heavy. If I find my mind wandering down the road of, ‘What was I thinking?’ I remember how colourless my life was when I spent several months away from journalism.
Funnily enough, what I can’t imagine living without now is something I was convinced I would never do. When I first entered the journalism world four years ago, I had different ideas of where my life would lead me. My journey began with the photojournalism program at Loyalist College in Belleville, Ontario, when I was 18.
I was awkward, timid, and hesitant to the point where I could hardly manage introducing myself to my class. I knew a newspaper is where I didn’t want to be. Instead I thought maybe fashion photography, or some kind of documentary work.
My very first assignment was to take a picture of an interesting person, and get one fact about them. Easy enough, right? Wrong. I found I was terrified of approaching a complete stranger. What if they rejected my request to take their picture? What if they laughed at me? My mind raced through endless scenarios where I couldn’t find someone and I failed the assignment, then the class, then school. I dropped out and worked at an unfulfilling minimum wage job for the rest of my days, essentially failing life.
Bewildered with my own insane train of thought, I went out the very day the assignment was due, having procrastinated and avoided it for as long as I possibly could, and lurked around the mall entrance in town. When I saw someone who caught my eye I built my courage, began my approach, then watched as my bravery morphed into the cowardly lion with its tail between its legs. This happened many times.
Finally, I told myself to get it together and nothing short of ambushed a poor elderly woman in a red hat. She had no teeth and her outfit was eccentric, but she was friendly and patient as I stumbled through my assignment spiel. And she was a psychic, how interesting!
It wasn’t until my second year in school, when I was flung with much dismay into the school newspaper, when I discovered something truly wonderful. Newspapers would become the love of my life.
I chuckle to myself thinking back on how lost I was when I first began. I’m happy to look upon my progress with a laugh, because in another four years I know I may very well be shaking my head with a smile on who I am now, at 22.
If ever I’m feeling discouraged about my work, I think of that painfully shy girl who was too afraid to have a casual conversation with a stranger. Who blushed and sputtered trying to explain why photojournalism, out of all things, was the path she chose. Who knew she would work anywhere but a newspaper.
When you get to spend so much time doing what you love, where is there room for complaints? Maybe I just haven’t run out of steam yet. However, although I may still be young, enthusiastic, and happy to have chased my dream, I don’t think I will be dragging my feet anytime soon.