OK, not really sure what I was thinking today. My goal was to set fear aside and work as a "Party Assistant" on the Chicago stretch of Lady Gaga's Monster Ball tour. This is a highly fearful and stressful situation for me as any combination of the following thoughts flood my head, "Am I dressed 'cute' enough?" (I was instructed to dress 'cute'), I don't know where I am going, even after I get to the building where I'm going I still don't know where I'm going once I'm inside, I don't know what I'm doing, and will anyone like me?".
As I changed my outfit for the 4th time, I decided I would use my newly acquired TomTom GPS navigational system in efforts to reduce at least one of the fears I had, which was getting lost. I dread getting lost and always leave early to allow extra time for it. Today I confidently thought an extra 20 minutes and the TomTom would set me up for success. As the TomTom and I headed out, everything seemed fine until I obviously "fell off the map" according to the GPS. Despite me knowing I was still on Congress Parkway and heading due West, somehow the TomTom had my car literally spinning about on the screen and relocated me to Holden Street. I don't even know where Holden Street is, but now the TomTom was telling me to turn left down Harrison and right on Dearborn - what the hell? "I'm on Congress!!!", I screamed at the TomTom. Somehow the TomTom must have understood my screaming, because within a block or two, not without a panicked call to my boyfriend for directions, it returned me to Congress Parkway.
"What did I get myself into?", I thought. "I'm not sure I'm even dressed right and if this TomTom does something stupid like that again, I'm probably gonna end up in Indiana or the lake, ARGGGHHHH!", I screamed to myself. The panic continued as now, due to construction, I was 30 minutes into what should have been a 20 minute car ride.
Thank goodness the TomTom allowed me to arrive to the venue with 5 minutes to spare, despite my virtual side trip to Holden Street. I was greatly relieved to see the one person I knew in the parking lot when I pulled up. I waved furiously to ensure she saw me, and parked my car in record time in efforts to catch up with her. She led me and two other girls though the loading docks, up an elevator and eventually to the VIP room. It was there that despite my best efforts to follow the "casual cute" dress code, I realized I was the most under dressed. I was the only one that took "jeans and a cute top", literal! I was mortified and wanted to run to the nearest clothing store immediately. "Oh well Lynn, suck it up!", I thought, "You're here now and there's nothing you can do about it.". Setting fear of being seen as a "slob" aside and mustering all the self confidence I could, I did my best to interact with the other girls. Throughout the conversation I offered advice where warranted about life, as I'm sure I was about 10 years their senior. "Man, I'm too old for this", I thought.
Eventually, we headed closer to the venue doors where I observed tons of "Little Monsters" (what Gaga has dubbed her fans) waiting for us. Once situated we doled out VIP passes, along with wristbands and directions for the night. I was definitely thankful to have something else to focus on for the moment. As the doors opened, I greeted each guest with a smile and handed out lanyards to the excited bunch. I tried to recall a time I was ever that excited about an artist as I observed the hoards of teens and pre-teens in Gaga costumes and heavy make-up, and now I thought, "I'm really too old for this.".
By the end of the night, while I was more then thankful for the opportunity to work and earn money, I have to admit I still felt like a fish out of water and couldn't wait to go home. Don't get me wrong, the night was not bad in any capacity and everyone was very nice, however it reminded me of my 20's and more so, that I'm not 20 anymore. At 34, this was just a job and a way to earn a little extra income, but had I been in my late teens or twenties this would have been the highlight of my life up until that point. To further my argument, the girls and I were given an amazing invite to watch the show after our shift was done, but despite liking Lady Gaga's music I was more focused on heading home and watching the 2nd season premiere of one of my favorite sitcoms and heading to bed!
I conquered quite a few fears today, including but not limited to; using new technology, branching out into a new opportunity, meeting new people while still maintaining self confidence and realizing clothing doesn't make you a good or bad employee. I recognized that I've done a lot of growing in the past 10 years, but understand I still have plenty of learning yet to do. I'm sure as I learn and grow, I'll continue to face all kinds of "Little Monsters" and over come them all! In the mean time, I'll be forever thankful for the wisdom instilled in me over the past 34 years and truly appreciate the roads I've been given to travel thus far.