Myfanwy Morgan: A Reflection
The fabulous M.M., Eden Court Ambassador and HYAH Forum member, reflects on the realities and challenges of life. Thank you for sharing your experience with us, Miffy.
A few months ago, I was going to be writing an article on the stresses but positives of University life and especially of studying an arts degree of any form. I have achieved a lot in my quite brief time on earth but like many I have also been through a lot. Until very recently I was studying for my BA in Acting for Stage and Screen at Napier and Queen Margaret University but I’ve had to put my studies on hold due to a diagnosis of depression.
I can tell you University life is fantastic and honestly will most likely still be some of the easiest, most enjoyable and thought provoking periods of your life. However, it can highly pressure you at a time of life where you are already going through an extremely difficult transition. The transition from teenage-hood to adulthood. Paying bills on time, dealing with passive, aggressive or passive aggressive neighbours, keeping up a job, keeping up finances without a job, I cannot list them all. It can seem increasingly difficult to push through to the career you want to attain.
My aspirations started when I was seven years, eleven months and three weeks old. You had to be eight to join the local amateur dramatics Thurso Players. So, I was entirely keen. I was a part of as many productions as possible, and as the years went by I joined new clubs. Eden Court Creative has an Outreach Programme that provides as many areas as possible with an Outreach worker to set up clubs, do workshops and generally help those that want to have a great time through the arts. These days were crucial to my development, I have done so many different projects with Eden Court that have made a massive impact to my future career and more importantly to my personal self. The best aspect of being a part of Eden Court? You never truly stop being part of them. Whether you move away, have not seen everyone in a long time or life happens.
In 2012 I auditioned for a project called RE:LOCATION 2012. I became one of 8 that would represent Scotland at an international festival in Norway. Then after that become part of a company of thirty-six to represent the country through a Commonwealth project called Tin Forest. These projects built my confidence up and showed me a glimpse of what my career could be. I loved everything I saw and it still drives me on creatively. In 2014/2015 I studied my Higher National Certificate in Acting and Performance at University of the Highlands and Islands, in 2015/2016 I studied my Higher National Diploma at Performing Arts Studio Scotland and well you can probably guess what came after that. And while doing my degree I even landed my first professional job in a feature film called “Anna and the Apocalypse” by company Blazing Griffin. Anyone on the outside would say why “give up” now?
Firstly, I have not given up. If I could have chosen not to let thoughts and feelings arise I would have. But as with so many people that suffer from mental health conditions I had achieved all the above mentioned, while dealing with my issues of that time. You’ll find a large amount of people in the creative industries will have conditions and will either use them or work through them. And that sometimes is the way it must be. A lot of us would say if we had the choice we would never want to feel that way, but the pretty awful reality is that it will have built us or our work whether it be for good or bad. This is about my successes in the career I have chosen but it’s also about my successes in realising the gravity of my own mind. Even the most driven people need to be able to reflect on themselves and have the self-care to apply what they find.