This is My Life (right now)

What is up everyone?? So after a very long hiatus, I am here for you with a new blog! There’s been a lot going on since the last time I wrote a blog and I just felt like sharing it with you guys.

The first major thing that happened is that I performed in my very first show in the Memphis theatre community! I had the absolute pleasure of performing in Theatre Memphis’ production of Sense and Sensibility. It was an absolutely wonderful experience. Through this process, I met some truly amazing people that I had some good laughs with and also some great conversation as well.

I auditioned for this show back in August, completely on a whim. I had been out of school for a few months. I hadn’t done a show since November and I really missed it. I was itching to get back on a stage. I saw the audition notice on Facebook and hesitated a bit at first. I’d auditioned for shows in the community in the past (back in high school) and had not felt super great about what I gave. I also really didn’t have much knowledge about the show itself. I told myself that I had far more experience than I did in the past and it was time for me to try and put this fancy degree that I had to use. Lo and behold, I ended up in the show! And I’m so extremely grateful that I did. I don’t know when the next show will be, but whatever it may be, I am ready for it!

Also, in the middle of dress rehearsals and performances for Sense and Sensibility,my family and I moved into a new house! AHH! The most fun part: having to move out in the span of two weeks. That’s right. While working almost 40 hours a week, being in rehearsals for a show, I was having to pack up to move out of the house I’d lived in since I was 4 years old in only TWO WEEKS. To say it was exhausting would be an understatement. Thankfully, I had an extremely understanding and supportive family/ set of roommates (Mom and Dad) that were able to get my things packed and ready to go while I wasn’t there. We’ve been here almost a month now and it’s actually been really nice. This new house is basically the same layout as my old one, just stretched out. I have a brand new room, new bed, new TV and new everything. It’s almost like having a loft to myself. Put a microwave and a mini fridge in there and I’m never coming out.

The nice part about this whole move is that we didn’t give up our old house to a complete stranger. My sister and my niece have taken our old house and they’ve truly made it their own. It’s really special to see them have their own little family in the house that we both grew up in.

Another really opportunity that’s come up for me lately has been teaching. Over the next few months, I’m gonna be the acting teacher for The Halloran Centre’s Interactive Field Trips with The Orpheum! It’s honestly been an awesome experience. The Orpheum has always been so gracious to me and given me some amazing opportunities. I’m incredibly grateful to them. Seeing kids gain a love for theatre in a place where I gained my love for theatre is truly an inspiring thing. I’ve also recently taken on a position as a Director-Mentor  with the Memphis Grizzlies Team Up Mentoring Program and Theatre Memphis! I go to Grizzlies Prep once a week and meet with a group of 7th graders and their mentors and help them develop a sketch that they will be performing at the end of their semester. It’s been an absolute blast. It feels good to provide them with that creative outlet and help them gain more confidence.

Recently, I decided to step down from my position as Supervisor at Charlotte Russe. I’m still with the company, but I plan on stepping back into the position of associate. I came to this decision after realizing that I was letting this job take a toll on my mental health. I found my anxiety getting worse with every time I came into work. I had to step back and realize that if this wasn’t healthy for me, I didn’t need to do it anymore. It was hard, but it was an instance where I had to think of myself first.

I used to have a picture of what my life looked like at this point. Almost a year out of college, I pictured myself working a 9-5 desk job, making a steady income, and living in my own place. Do I have that right now? No. And that’s okay. It’s good to plan for the future, but if you fixate on it too heavily, you’ll be unhappy with what you have now. It’s always important to remember the blessings you’ve been given right here and right now. I know, sometimes easier to fixate on what you don’t have rather than what you do have. But if you just take a minute out of every day to think of three things you’re grateful for, it can make you a happier person. Don’t forget to count your blessings, fam!

After this long hiatus, I’m hoping to start putting out a blog once a week. This is a nice outlet for me, and I hope someone can take something from it. So, until next week!

All the love, fam

Court. ❤

 

 

 

No More Shaming

Let me start out by saying this. I believe that all women are beautiful. Whether you are a size 0 or a size 24, I don’t believe there is a size that defines what a “real woman” is. Nobody should body shame anyone ever.

A few days ago, I read an article that popped up on my Facebook feed that boiled my blood. The title read “You Can Shame My Size Zero, But I Can’t Shame Your Size 16?” Obviously, this was click bait, but I read it just to see if there was any actual merit behind the title. There wasn’t.

Now, I understand that lately there’s been somewhat of an attack on thinner women. There have been claims saying that they aren’t “real women”. I don’t agree with this. I understand how that might be frustrating to hear.

But as a plus sized woman, I don’t wanna hear skinny women complain about being bullied for being skinny. Because let’s be real, IT DOESN’T HAPPEN.

Women under a size 4 have had representation in the media. They’re the models. They’re the ones you see on TV. I didn’t start seeing plus sized models even being recognized until I was about 16 years old. I grew up constantly hating myself for not looking like one of those girls. I started pushing myself into diets and different programs when I was 10 years old. I was called fat by boys I went to middle school with. I constantly wondered why I was never skinny.

Finally, here I am at the age of 22, able to accept myself as I am. A proud size 16. After years of being mean to myself and trying to be something that I wasn’t, I love my body the way it is. I still have my down days too. I am healthy. I am happy. I am what I am supposed to be.

That being said. For those skinny women being body shamed, I’m sorry that someone has made you feel this way. But that doesn’t give you any right whatsoever to turn right back around and do the same thing to someone bigger than you. Because they’ve had to go through a lot more than you can imagine.

I’m not writing this as a pity party for myself. I’m not writing this as a cry for sympathy. I’m writing this because I’m tired of everyone finding excuses to nitpick at each other. We’re all beautiful (Except Donald Trump.) Let’s all just stop body shaming each other. Deal?

meangirls

All the love,

Court. ❤

This One’s for the LADIES!!

Hey y’all!

So, I’ve said this before, but let me just give you a disclaimer. I am not the most politically educated person. But I am a human being with a heart, a mind and sense of right and wrong. Not only that, I have a lot of feelings. And lately, all I’ve been feeling is a lot of anger.

It’s been hard to ignore that the past few days, being a woman in this country feels kinda crappy. Sorry Excuse for a Human, Donald Trump was in serious trouble after audio from 2005 was released that included him making some heinous comments about women. (Honestly, I can’t quite bring myself to write it in this article, but if you haven’t heard the story by now, go do some research.) Obviously, I was horrified after hearing these comments. I think what makes me angry is that this probably isn’t even the worst thing to come out of his mouth. We’ve seen him say awful things about Former Miss Universe, Alicia Michado. We’ve heard stories of him walking into the dressing room of Miss Teen USA, uninvited. He’s told female journalists that the only reason they have their job is because they are attractive.

Hearing these things infuriates me to a point that I am unable to describe. What kills me more than anything is that there are people out there who truly believe that this hateful, homophobic, racist, misogynistic, idiotic man is the best choice to lead our country. Even worse than that? There are still women who support him.

I’ve tried to fully understand the logic behind it, and I jusr can’t. The only thing they know how to do is say something negative about Hillary. When asked to defend Trump, they never really say anything positive about him. Seeing things like #Repealthe19th genuinely makes me sick.  To the women voting for him, I’m so sorry for all of the self-hatred that you carry. I genuinely feel sorry for you that you can’t see your own worth and realize that you should fight for your own rights. I’m sorry that you don’t wanna realize the power that you have. I pray one day that you see your worth.

This brings me to a major point.

YALL. WE HAVE THE FIRST FEMALE RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT. THIS IS SUCH A BIG DEAL. When I was a little girl, I would have never even dreamed that I could be president. It fills my heart with joy to see little girls today have the opportunity to know that they can do whatever they want to do. Including being President of these United States.

Obviously, as you can tell, this blog endorses Mrs. Hillary Rodham Clinton for President. She’s severely overqualified and the fact that people are even questioning the terrible second choice is a little insulting. Trump’s supporters only seem to carry the hatred of her around, rather than what’s so “great” about their candidate. As a Hillary supporter myself, I’m willing to see the flaws in her, but also acknowledge the great things she will go on to do for our country. Hillary sees this country is already great and knows how to make it even better. America will be a better place once Trump’s hateful rhetoric will be far away from the eyes and ears of this country.

While I’m thinking about it, let’s address a separate subject. Let’s talk about what the real definition of feminism is, shall we? 57968-10418588-feminist_definition_jpeg

That’s it. Does it say anything in there about burning bras? Growing out body hair? Man hating? NOPE. By this definition, if you are a human with a mind and a heart, you should be a feminist. So, I don’t wanna see anymore articles titled “I’m a Woman, but I’m not a Feminist and That’s Ok.” Glad we got that settled.

Like I said, I know it’s been kind of hard to be a woman in this country. But please don’t lose sight of how awesome it is to be a woman right now, and the fact that we are extremely close to having our first female president. We have the power to vote for representation in the white house. If you’re a lady reading this- Hey. You’re a badass. Please don’t forget how awesome you are. You carry a lot of power. You are just as good as anybody else. Don’t sell yourself short. Don’t ever feel less than you are.

pawneegodesses

All the love,

Court. ❤

Schoolin Life

Happy Friday, y’all!

So, I’ve been meaning to write this blog for quite sometime. This week, I’ve had a lot of revelations and it feels like high time to express it through my blog.

As y’all know, I graduated from college this May. Of course, in August of your senior year, you start getting the age old question “So, what’s your plan?”. And, of course, as someone with a theatre degree, you get the famous follow-up question “What do you plan to do with that?”. After a year of answering those questions, it finally falls in your lap; the post-grad life.

All throughout my senior year, I thought about what it might be like. I pictured myself maybe working in an office somewhere, behind a desk, doing the whole 9-5 thing. Did I wanna do that? No. Not particularly. But I needed something to help me save up for what my “Master Plan” is.

My “Master Plan” is to move to Chicago, audition for The Second City Conservatory (hopefully be accepted), and work to make people laugh for a living. That absolutely still is my dream.

Over the past few months, I’ve watched some of my fellow graduates move to New York, get jobs across the country, and do other various things. It’s been so exciting to see where everyone has ended up and I can’t wait to see how far they go in this life. I can’t lie, though. When I first saw all of these things happening, I couldn’t help but be a little jealous. Here I was, sitting in my parents’ house, the house I’ve lived in for 14 years, not really doing anything that interesting.

Tiff and I had had a conversation a few weeks ago, where I gave her the advice to “make lemons out of lemonade”. (I got this advice from our Lord and Savior, Beyonce Knowles-Carter). It became one of those moments where I realized I needed to take my own advice.I needed to see the good in everything instead of seeing the bad.

I had to sit and count my blessings. I recently got promoted to a leadership position in a job that I love with people that I love. It hasn’t been easy, but being able to motivate others in a job that has pushed me to do my best is a really good feeling. No, it’s not a 9-5 job behind a desk, where I’m making tons of money. But it makes me happy. And I know that it’s where I’m supposed to be.

Yes, I’m living with my parents. But, I am extremely lucky to have a roof over my head. My parents can absolutely drive me insane, but I’m lucky that they’re letting me stay with them until I have enough money for my plan to follow through. I know they’re always gonna be my number 1 fan. I’m also still involved with theatre! I was recently cast in my first community theatre show and I couldn’t be more excited about it.

Another thing I’ve had a complex about is my social life. Of course, while in college, you make tons of friends that you know you’ll see somewhere down the line. Before I graduated, there were many people that I got close to. There seems to be this idea that once you graduate, you evaporate into thin air. Never to be seen or heard from again. Because Tiff is still in school currently, I still get the pleasure of seeing some of my favorite people that I got close to while in school. At first, I felt a lot of guilt about this. Here I was, a 22 year old hanging out with “college kids”. Of course, the lovely little voice in my head named Miss Anxiety kept telling me “Wow, Court. You need to get a life. You need to move on.” I finally realized that that isn’t true. I was the only one telling myself this. If other people wanna think it’s “sad” for me to hang out with people who are still going to my old school, that’s for them to think. It’s none of my business. Whether these people are still in school or not, it doesn’t matter. These people are my friends. They make me happy. I’m not gonna deny something that makes me happy because somebody else might think it’s weird.

I’ve been sitting for so long trying to figure out what my life is right now exactly.I finally stopped to realize that my life doesn’t need to put into any kind of category right now. Life is messy, it isn’t perfect. It’s not supposed to fit any kind of mold. That’s exactly what my life is right now. I have no idea what I’m doing, but I know I’m having fun. I’m really happy with where I am right now. I don’t need to explain it to anyone else. I’m not apologizing for anything. I’m right where I’m supposed to be. I’ve got people that care about me, a job that I love, and a roof over my head. For the first time in a long time, I’m really happy.

me

For those of you about to graduate, I hope you can take this blog to heart. Just take life one step at a time. Don’t force anything. You’ll be where you’re supposed to be.

All the love,

Court. ❤

Happy Birthday, Blog!

Hey y’all!

So, thanks to Timehop, I learned that today is the one year anniversary of my blog!

birthday

I didn’t wanna let this milestone go unnoticed, so what’s the best way to celebrate? You guessed it, writing a little blog post!

One year ago, while on a 3 hour break between classes (#commuterstudent), after hearing my Mom saying that I should write a blog 1,001 times, I finally decided to go for it. I started this out as a journal for my final year of college. Essentially, I feel like that’s what it was.But it’s evolved into so much more than that. It’s my own personal sounding board for my ideas. I love this blog because it really isn’t about one particular thing. *cheesy alert* That’s why it’s so personal to me. It’s the best form of self-expression that I’ve found thus far.

Like this blog, I’m also a person comprised of many different parts. I like listening to One Direction and Drake,  I like wearing my 90s tattoo choker with everything, I like dogs, I like raunchy stand-up comedy, I like owning lipstick in 50 different colors, I like coffee with way too much sugar, I like eating steak and all in all I like lots of different things.

im-not-a-regular-mom-im-a-cool-mom-gif.gif

I’ve spent a lot of time trying to figure out what “category” I fit into. After a long soul search, I’ve finally realized that I don’t have to fit into any box. I am my own type. Everyone has their own unique brand. Once I realized this, I became a much happier person. I found myself not really comparing myself to others as much because of this. My blog is an embodiment of who I am. It doesn’t really fit into any particular box, but it’s a lot of fun. 🙂

In the past year, I’ve learned more about myself than I could have possibly imagined and I owe a lot of it to this blog. I was really scared thinking that no one would really care what I have to say. But one of the things that has kept me going back to this blog is the amount of positive response. Every like, every share, every “Hey, Courtney, i loved your blog post!” means more to me than you can even imagine. Like I said, this blog is for myself, but it’s here for others as well. Hearing people say that my blog has helped them some way warms my heart.

All in all, this blog has #blessed me in so many ways. If you are feeling like starting one yourself, GO FOR IT! Throw caution to the wind and type/write your heart away! It can really change you for the better.

All the love,

Court. ❤

 

What I Learned in Theatre School Is…

Hey friends!

So as August is in full swing, we know what that means!

billy-madison-back-to-school

That’s right, it’s time for back to school! This year is a little different for me, though. For the first time in 16 years, I’m not heading back to school. What’s even weirder is that I’m not heading into the theatre building in August for the first time in four years.

Being a theatre major is EXTREMELY different than having any other major in college. You know practically everyone in your department, you’re  reading a play every night, and you could stay in that building for practically all hours of the night.

Even though I won’t be heading back to school this year myself, I just graduated from a department that I spent 4 exhausting, yet incredibly rewarding years. I want to share my wisdom with you about how to make it through college as a theatre major.

  • SLEEP, YOU IDIOT. 
    • I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to call you an idiot. You’re not. 🙂 What I mean, though is that you need to sleep. You’re not super human. Don’t stay up until 4 AM watching TV. I promise that paper that’s due tomorrow will still have the ability to be written in the morning. If you have the option to get at least 6-7 hours of sleep a night, just do it. You’ll be more alert in your classes. You’ll just feel more together as a human. You may even wake up looking like this.
      • holiday wake up
  • Time Management is KEY
    • MAJOR KEY ALERT: to be early is to be on time. To be on time is to be late. To be late is to be royally screwed. This applies ESPECIALLY to theatre as a whole. Not just in rehearsal but in class. SHOW UP EARLY FOR YOUR CLASSES. I became so paranoid about being on time while being in school, that I used to show up to things 30 minutes early. I don’t recommend that. However, you need to be *at least* 15 minutes early to any class and rehearsal in your career. Your directors and professors appreciate it like crazy. You don’t wanna be the person that is perpetually late for everything.
      • whiterabbit
  • A wise man once said: stay. in. your. lane.
    • Stay in your lane. People often ask me what this phrase means. If you’re over the age of 15, you’ve driven a car before. You know what a lane is on a road. While driving on the road, you are supposed to stay in the white lines, known as your “lane”. As a human being in social settings, this applies. In a theatre department where everyone knows everyone, it’s easy to get caught up in everyone’s business. Unless it concerns you, STAY OUT OF IT. Just worry about you. I used to get so caught up in other people’s business to the point where I was just angry. I was so concerned with everyone else, I didn’t even take the time to be concerned about myself. Just remember. Stay in your lane.
      • catdriving
  • Bond with your class
    • Obviously, when in college, you’re not in a “grade” anymore. However, it’s important to know the people that you start and finish college with. These are the people that you will absolutely see everyday. You’ll have almost every class together. You’ll hang out together. They’ll be your people. You may grow distant over four years with one another, but that camaraderie is so important. The people in your graduating class are going through a lot of similar things as you. These are the people whose couches you may be sleeping on in New York one day. And ultimately, you get to watch them go on to do awesome things. You know they’ll be there to cheer you on and you’re there to cheer them on. (Shout-out to the University of Memphis BFA Theatre Class of 2016. You guys are my homies 5ever. <3)
  • Casting does not define you
    • Holy cow, this is a biggie, so listen up. As a theatre major, you will go through 1,001 auditions. You search for a monologue. If you’re a woman, it usually takes you about a year and three months to find a monologue that isn’t overdone, is in your correct age range, and that isn’t a “storytelling monologue”. If you’re a dude, it takes you two minutes. You go in, feeling confident, pumping yourself up. You leave, thinking you may have nailed it. Sometimes, you leave thinking “Did I even make words come out of my mouth?” Above all, just remember this: no matter the outcome, you still are a talented human. As someone who went through college not necessarily getting cast left and right, it took me a really long time to learn this. I saw my peers getting cast in all of the big roles on the main stage. I became so frustrated trying to figure out why it wasn’t my turn yet. I finally realized while looking back that it wasn’t about getting the biggest role on the biggest stage. Everything happens for a reason. Something bigger is coming.

Now, here’s some minor things to remember

  • All plays 100 years or older can be found for free online
  • Take classes that you’re interested in, that may challenge you.
  • Try not to have Friday classes, if you can help it.
  • Don’t spend all of your dining dollars in one place
  • Don’t mix your liquors at parties

 

All in all, don’t feel like you have to change who you are to be in school for four years. Go in there and just do the best that YOU can do. I know it’ll be great, even if you don’t think so.

Now, go slay this year, superstar!

islay

All the love,

Court.<3

Who You Gonna Call?

What’s up, y’all?! I hope life has been treating all of you well!

So, unless you’ve been living under a rock recently, you’ll know that the Ghostbusters reboot was released in theatres. Anyone who knows me knows that I’ve been anxiously awaiting this movie since it was announced. Then when I heard the cast list (Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon and Leslie Jones), I was 110% on board. These four women have been role models of mine for a long time and I was excited to see them in one movie together.

The day after it came out, I dragged my mom to the movie theatre with me and told her that we absolutely had to see it. Honestly, I was more anxious about it than I thought I would be. I mean, it’s a movie, right? A crazy thing to feel anxious about, if you think about it. As my mom and I were sitting in the theatre before previews started, I noticed a lot of people bringing their children in. This took me by surprise, considering it was a PG-13 movie. It kinda bothered me for a little bit, but I wasn’t gonna let it ruin the movie for me.

2 hours later, I left with a face that hurt from smiling and laughing so much. It had exceeded my already high expectations. I also left feeling extremely empowered. Full disclosure: I’ve never seen the original Ghostbusters movie.  HOWEVER. Seeing these four hilarious women also carry an action movie made me feel so inspired. This movie never really played the feminism card at all. It wasn’t about the fact that they were women. I feel like most action movies that have come out in recent years over-sexualize the female heroes in action movies. These weren’t four girls wearing leather bikinis whipping their fake ponytails around and shooting machine guns at drug lords. They were just four smart women who wanted to prove something to the city and protect the world.

Fast forward to today. I’ve been working at a summer camp for theatre with various age groups. This week we have our “Rising Stars”, which are usually kids around ages 9-12. Every morning we kinda sit in a circle and talk about what they did the night before. One little girl said, “I went to see the new Ghostbusters movie!”. I got so excited, because I love talking to virtually anyone or anything about this movie. I instantly exclaimed, “That’s awesome!! I love that movie! Did you like it?” Some of the other little girls chimed in as well, saying things like “I love that movie!”, “It was awesome!!”, “My favorite was (insert character name here).” “Miss Courtney, who was your favorite?” And all of a sudden, something struck a chord with me. These group of young girls saw the Ghostbusters movie. They got to see four kick-ass, hilarious, smart women lead an action movie. I suddenly realized why I saw so many kids in the movie theatre that day when I saw the movie myself. These kids are growing up to see some awesome heroes. And that honestly makes my heart melt with happiness. I didn’t get to have these heroes growing up. Of course, I’ve idolized these women for years. But I never thought I would get to see them carry an action movie. Let me just say that if there are 2016 Ghostbusters action figures, I will be the first one to buy them.

Something that I knew was gonna happen, was backlash. Specifically from men. Let me just say, I am not man-bashing here. But some critics, mostly male, have been saying negative things about it. Another thing that breaks my heart is hearing that Leslie Jones, comedian and actual human goddess, has been bashed on Twitter all day long for her performance in the movie. She received  disgusting amount of hate and yet nothing from Twitter was done to stop it. It makes absolutely no sense to me. This woman should be extremely proud of the work she’s done, especially in this movie. Of  course, with any movie or any piece of art in general, there will be backlash.

Here’s what I have to say about all of this:

Whether you hated this movie or you loved it: this movie is extremely important for young women. It shows them that they truly can do whatever they want to. They don’t have to answer to anybody. They can do whatever they set their mind to.

Thanks for reading, as always.

All the love,

Court. ❤