It was 2003. My mother made her transition after a tough bout with pancreatic cancer, my love life knocked me out of the ring like Tommy Hearns did Martin, and I was still trying to figure out post-college adulthood. I took all of that heartache, the bumps, bruises, and uncertainty, and poured it into an emotionally-intense dramatic study under the guidance of Susan Batson, Roberta Wallach, Clebert Ford, Joie Lee, and Carl Ford. I transitioned from a 9-to-5 job where I begrudgingly sold copiers for Xerox to a “survival job” at B. Smiths waiting tables like every other budding actor I knew. I very quickly realized that being a server wasn’t my thing but “trying to do the acting thing,” as I would often say, became the new dream and I stuck it out. Another survival job here, a small acting gig there, and one thing led to another and albeit slowly, the ball started rolling.
Somewhere around four or five years into this journey, I stopped “trying" to do the acting thing, and proudly took on the title; "I's a actor now." Even while washing dirty windows for a few bucks, I knew what I had become and I earned it. I joined the unions and held my first SAG card to the heavens as if it were a baby. "Behold, no more extra work for you, ye shalt have speaking parts!" I was birthing a dream and they say babies are expensive, but so was that SAG card, and all the sacrifices that come with being in this industry.
For a long time now I've put acting before life, but my focus is shifting to another aspect of the dream...a family and building a legacy. I'm here for acting and for this career. I love it, even when it doesn't love me back. The dream is real, and thanks to so many people like my father, family, and friends, I am living the dream. Shifting focus doesn't mean losing sight of the dream at all. Instead, as in the film Inception, I'm waking up to the reality that the dream is a dream within a dream. There's levels to this shit, and I'm here for them all.