I tried to be someone else.
For about a month I thought I would become a professional photographer.
I’ve always been creative, artistic. I’ve painted in several mediums, sculpted, and I can craft with the best of them. I also have an eye for photography but no formal training. Friends and family kept telling me how much they loved my photos. I kept looking at the work of the photographer we had hired and thinking, “I can do better.” So I came up with a name and a plan. I bought an expensive (but still introductory) DSLR and a beginner class.
And then I began to panic.
I like photography and I do think I am good at it. I do think with practice and training that I could be really good at it. But wtf was I thinking in trying to make it into a business?
I have no head for business. Even if I wasn’t plagued with crippling anxiety, I’m introverted and shy. I’m friendly. I’m genuine. But I’m quiet. I have no hustle. I’m terrified of numbers and money. And, let’s face it, the human race is full of assholes.
I thought I could do it part time. I thought it would give me something to do when she inevitably goes to school. I thought I could make some extra cash to pad our bank account or buy designer sunglasses or whatever. But photography suddenly and violently lost all of its joy for me. So I shut it down.
When I confessed this to my husband (all be it with a bit of angst) I immediately felt better. I’m not giving up photography. I’m actually still taking the class so that I can learn how to use this stupid piece of equipment. But I am more pursuing it as an artist, rather than a businesswoman.
I had begun to feel like I was betraying myself, too. How dare I? How dare I seek another creative career? How dare I take on something else that would dig into my already precious free time. How the fuck would I ever finish another novel at that rate?
I wouldn’t. And so I couldn’t.