12 Days ago I was in my car, my mouth agape as I stared incredulously at an email that informed me I’d been shortlisted for a year long internship…in London.
For those of you who know me or have been following me on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Youtube…etc… – you know that living in London has been my dream for a long time.
Everyone’s response to that – to me- is always the same: “It’s expensive.”
I know that. I know living in London is expensive. Living in New York was expensive too. Living in Los Angeles has been expensive.
“Yeah…but London is more expensive.”
That doubt. Those words. The way these helpful people try to let me down easy. It’s an unintentional form of discouragement. Like when I comment that a guy I’ve noticed is “kind of cute” and someone else immediately pipes up, “He has a girlfriend.” It’s the same intention. The same underlying message: “Let it go.”
But where London is concerned I simply can’t ‘let it go.’ At least not right now. Not before I’ve tried – like really tried – to get there. So I applied for this internship not really expecting anything to come of it. I’ve sent out dozens of resumes to companies in London with maybe one or two responses. I’d never been shortlisted before. So yes, my jaw dropped to the ground when I read this email.
But after my initial elation I dismissed the email. I was shortlisted. I hadn’t been offered the internship (yet). And I had to be in London by March 7 to appear for an assessment. So that meant going to London- then coming back to LA and if I’m offered the internship I would need to go back to London in April.
Yeah it was a total longshot.
I work in retail – no way was I going to be able to book a flight to London (twice) in such a short amount of time. I could hear the voices telling me how expensive plane tickets were. And how was I going to do that twice? Not to mention, if I actually got the internship how expensive it would be to pack up my life in Los Angeles and relocate. And don’t even get me started on the fees to apply for a Visa…
A Total Longshot.
“Let it go…”
But then…I told my mom about it and after that conversation everything changed. A few other people felt it was premature of me to dismiss the idea of going to London. And then one by one my friends and family started encouraging me to try.
They kept saying, “What if…?”
I kept asking, “But how…?”
Then mom suggested I start a fundraiser – because who better than my ever-supportive friends and family to turn to in a time like this – to raise the money for my plane ticket.
The idea of starting a fundraiser scared me. I mean, that would involve really putting myself out there. Some friends called me “bold” for doing that. Others “appreciated my candor.” I still can’t believe I actually did it.
I’ve never been really good at fundraisers. In high school, when we were selling hoagies to go on various trips I think I managed to sell about 2 sandwiches. It’s not that I was lazy – I just wasn’t good at asking for what I needed.
So a lot of times I simply went without.
But mom kept pushing. Friends kept encouraging and the next thing I knew I was starting a fundraiser. And the donations started to trickle in.
Then I woke up the other day and found that I’d reached my goal of $1000. And friends are still sending in donations.
I’m going to London.
I still can’t believe it. It’s incredible that so many people were so supportive and so generous. From the people who passed on the link and tweeted me words of encouragement to the people who talked with me about my plans and asked questions about the internship. I appreciate everyone who took an interest in what I was trying to accomplish.
I’m so excited that this is actually happening. And when I get to London I will do my very best to prove to everyone over there that I’m the right candidate for the internship.
Wish me luck!
If I am offered the internship I will have to apply for a work Visa – which means my fundraiser is ongoing. If you’d like to contribute please check out the link: www.GoFundMe.com/DawnMelissaInLondon
If you want to follow this journey be sure to follow my blog and subscribe to my Youtube channel: www.youtube.com/dawnMelissavlogs
Always Dream Big.