Her Story: The Risks and Rewards of a First Step

By Guest Blogger Belinda Todd

I am an actor. This avocation is not about the paycheck, nor is it about recognition. It is an innate something that makes me want to see the world through characters often different from myself.  It is fulfilling a dream.

However, fear almost made me cancel my first audition. The afternoon appointment was set and I arrived at the theater early. Before I could turn off the engine, the mind chatter began: “Are you crazy! Who do you think you are? You will be laughed at!”

Too nice to be a no-show, the integrity of my word compelled me to open the car door and channel an inner diva. I strolled into the theater like I belonged there.

When the audition was over, I was ecstatic, invigorated! I was finally feeding my interests. The director had said she would get back to me in a few days. Three weeks later I had given up hope of being in this performance. Then the e-mail came, offering me the part of Reba in Before It Hits Home, a play by Cheryl L. West.

The play was well received and my performance was good – not stellar, just good. But I was hooked. I was in a new tribe—a community of talented artists.

Today, my credits include television, stage, commercials, and most recently, film. I am so glad that on that fateful day, I took the first step.

The first step begins the journey to nurturing your goals and developing your talents. The first step takes you outside your comfort zone and into your dreams. The first step is a signal to the universe to prepare the way. If you don’t take the first step, you’ll never know what could be.

You see, I am a black woman over 50. The odds of venturing into new territory were not in my favor. I have watched too many people give up on their dreams at certain mile markers in life, letting age dictate their fate. But I am daily choosing to see life as a glorious adventure.

I don’t know what it takes to liberate your soul, but I do know that until you do, your light will not fully shine. The first step is embracing the vulnerability that exposes who you are on the inside: your beauty, your talent, your capabilities as well as you weaknesses.

Here is the truth: first steps are scary. It is scary to leave comfortable surroundings, routine living and even old friends. I didn’t know if I could memorize scripts or if I would appear too old with a younger generation of actors. But I had to take a risk. I had to risk looking foolish and out-of-place. Even though I risked ridicule, I didn’t risk my faith in a kind and loving God who sees me and always has my back. I have learned that it can be good, oh so good, to risk the first step.

Belinda Todd is a risk-taker. After retiring from a career with the airlines, img_4841Belinda received a master’s degree in theology, became a certified yoga instructor, and is now studying acting. She is also an Adjunct Instructor in the Languages and Literature Department at Virginia State University. She believes her mission is to inspire and empower women to use their gifts and talents to make the earth more loving, more peaceful and more joy-filled.

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Author: Stacy Hawkins Adams

Through both fiction and nonfiction, Stacy Hawkins Adams uses the written word to inspire readers to recognize their relevance, use it for good and enjoy the journey. Learn more at www.StacyHawkinsAdams.com

14 thoughts on “Her Story: The Risks and Rewards of a First Step”

  1. Congratulations! I loved this article- Ms. Todd gave me a dose of inspiration to follow my dreams- never be afraid to reach for the stars, the worst that could happen is you land among the clouds! You are my hero !

    Like

  2. Absolutely love Belinda! She is a fantastically calm and introspective individual. Her poise and aphorisms make her a genuine and unique soul; a breath of fresh air in a world lacking individualism.

    Like

  3. You are my inspiration, my spiritual guide, my counselor, my former colleague, my sounding board, my financial advisor, my sister, my hero, my stylist, my dream catcher and my wonderful, daring, brilliant and dear friend. Your accomplishments and daily schedule are dizzying and I applaud you. I am forever grateful that our stars crossed and we are in each other’s life

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  4. Amen! We need more folks like you to share and believe in fulfilling your desires. Dreams are great, however, you need to wake-up and take action. Thanks again, I need to finish my book!👍🏽

    Like

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