A Case of the Whys

My quest to get to New York and finagle my way into the fashion industry has thus far been painstakingly unfruitful. It seems like I keep hitting road block after road block. A promising window of opportunity appears and as I’m making my way towards it, it slams in my face.  I’m trying my absolute hardest to not get discouraged and continue holding onto my hope and standing on my faith but some days I’m ready to climb down, let go and give up.

When these moments happen, I’m usually knee deep in a LinkedIn stalking session, trying to figure out who to address my next cover letter to and obsessing over the work history of someone who currently does what I want to do. This then leads to me barraging myself and God with a series of “whys” and the conversation typically goes something like this:

  • Why did I not go to undergrad in New York?
  • Why Boston, where there’s basically no fashion scene? (Mind you I took advantage of whatever fashion opportunities I could grab between internships and extracurriculars).
  • Why did I not have the chance to take advantage of all of those crucial, connection-making NY summer fashion internships?
  • Why does it seem like no one gives a damn about my previous experience or the company that I was at for two years?
  • Why AND HOW do I not have ONE friend of a second cousin’s best friend’s sister who can help me get my foot in the door?

After I ask all the whys I have to take a step back and essentially answer these questions. I didn’t go to undergrad in New York because, despite NYU being my dream school, I received a full-tuition scholarship to attend Boston University. I couldn’t take advantage of NY internships because I signed a 4-year contract my senior year of high school to intern for one company every summer in exchange for scholarship money to cover room & board. I still don’t have answers for the final two questions but at the end of the day I have to recognize that I made those choices and if asked would I change them, the answer is no. It’s no because at the time my priorities and focus were attending undergrad as close to free as possible.

I’ve come to realize that my fretting usually stems from a subconscious game of comparison; Looking at the paths of those “making it” in the industry I so badly want to be in. This does nothing for me nor does asking all these whys and wondering if I messed up or chose wrong. I didn’t choose wrong but that doesn’t make the mental warfare any easier. I have to constantly remind myself to mind my own business. Just because my path doesn’t seem to be leading anywhere presently, doesn’t mean it can’t get there. WHEN I make it to wherever it is I’m going, I’ll be able to wear the badge of the “non-traditionalist” in the pack, which will honestly be pretty dope. While I haven’t been able to land the opportunity I’ve been looking for, it has forced me focus more and more on not leaving the reigns of my career in the hands of others (reigns that no one seems to be touching anyways) and taking control. Someway, somehow I will end up where I am meant to be, when I am meant to be there.

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