Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry Christmas

I'm home for the although I'm sure it seems like I've taken a break from writing already (sorry...been busy) I probably won't write for a while yet. I've got nothing to do, but the internet at my parent's place is painfully slow. I am right now at my brother's house, where he has wireless, but where he also keeps calling me by his girlfriend's name. I think it's funny but my other brother thinks it's creepy.

So, have a Merry Christmas everyone, and a Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Christmas Time's a comin'...

...and I have not written here for two weeks! Not that much has been happening...the show is trucking along, only 8 shows left (I write this from backstage before the last show of the week) is almost done...I took my last dance class ever yesterday and it made me realize that I am entering a week of lasts. Last choir concert, last choir class, last acting class presentation, last performance night (possibly), last voice lesson, last acting coaching session (possibly)...
It's a busy last week of school. On Sunday I am resting, then going to a bridal shower for L. Monday I am at a fund-raiser for the school all day. Tuesday, class all day. Wednesday, same deal with a show too. Then three days of two shows a day, possible final project auditions (oh yeah! I got my final project approved and now I'm headed down the road to hell...I mean, finishing my programme, which is not the same thing at all), hanging out with classmates before they all super-nova next year...
It is a strange thing to be in the end of a four year section of my life.
But it is an adventure too.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

63 Compliments for under a Dollar

I received 63 compliments from the 13-year-old boys in the cast last night. Between the 3 of them, I heard everything from “Why don’t you have a halo?” (my personal favourite) to “You drink water well” and “Your grin looks good on you”. I was complimented on my tooth-brushing abilities, my teeth, my eyes (which are not only as blue as the sea and the sky but reminiscent of stars), my lips, my acting and singing; I was told I would win the World’s Next Top Model and Canadian Idol, that I make everything I wear look good, and that I am witty and as wise as the sea. I was told that if the alphabet could be reorganized “I’d put U and I together” and that I’d make a great girlfriend. They also liked my laugh.

No, I did not spike their water with love potion. It all started when one of them asked me if I’d give him a nickel for every compliment; when I said no, he asked for 2 cents, and when faced with another rejection he settled for one. I have a load of pennies I’ve been wanting to get rid of so – somewhat to his surprise I think – I agreed. Then another one of them heard of the plan, so with the spark of competition they jumped head-long into it. The third boy hasn’t joined the race but he’s the winner as far as quality goes – he’s responsible for my favourite one, which he tossed out after listening to the other two go at it for five minutes.

I’ve made some rules. After they both got to around 25 I decided that they can only give me one compliment at a time – one before the show, one at intermission, one after the show, etc. – which I hope will not only up the quality but will make it easier for me to remember the good ones and record them later.

So far it’s worked rather well. And if nothing else, at the end of this, I’ll have a rather inflated ego, I’ll have gotten rid of all my pennies, and the 13-year-olds will have a better idea of what to say to woo their own fair maidens. It’s a win-win situation for me and they learn something constructive. If the next generation of girls gets blessed/plagued with verbose guys that’s just how it has to be.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

I think there may be light coming...

So, I am posting a bunch of depressing stuff I wrote in the last week below, but today I woke up feeling lighter than I have for a while. My acting coach told me that freedom comes with responsibility, and that thought is percolating in my soul - also that God doesn't give us freedom but he gives us chances to grab it for ourselves. So I am realizing that I have to get up off my butt and reach for what I want even when it scares me shitless.
Anyway - the depressing stuff. Here it is.

I’m not sure I believe in God’s love anymore.

I believe He exists. That He is who He says He is. The whole dying for sins thing too, being the saviour of the world.

But my saviour?

It is so hard. To trust. To have faith. To believe that He cares for me, that He cares what happens to me, that in the outcome of my life He has any interest.

In chapel today we read a psalm aloud. “In Him does my heart trust.” Trust came out as a whisper.

I don’t trust God right now and I think that maybe if I did I wouldn’t feel so full of pain and despair but the feelings aren’t going away and I don’t feel His presence any closer so it’s hard to start trusting Him now.

God, I hate this.

I don’t know why it started and I don’t see any ending.

It goes away for a day here and there which just makes it that much worse when it comes back.

And I keep running into blocks in my acting that are connected to specific things that happened in my life that are connected to how I feel now, and I can’t make any headway and I am despairing in everything.

I know I need to get help but I am reluctant. Afraid.

Pray for me. I ask this with the awareness of the irony therein. Pray for me, that my faith might come back and my joy might return.

I have to learn to trust myself. I have to learn to listen to myself. I have to stop being so hard on myself.

It isn’t that I don’t believe in God. I still do. I believe he exists. I just don’t believe so much that he cares about me. And I’m wondering just why I should care about him.
My faith has never been super strong. My brother said it well – I’m more sure that I won’t let my 6 year old watch LoTR than I am that I will be a Christian when I have said 6 year old. God know this, or He should. So why is He testing me this way? He knows I’m not strong in this area. He knows better. He is gambling and He might lose. I don’t understand why He would do this.

I am not strong enough to be Job and yet that is who I am being forced to be.

Stream of Consciousness Murky and Dark

How can I act now? I am missing my soul.
How can I make art? My tool is an empty shell without heart or warm blood.
How can I create when I am dead?

My soul is trapped so deep within me
it screams and all that comes out is a smile
on an empty vacuous face
How are you?
Fine, fine
and my spirit is dying but no one can see it
and I have no fire left within me
the Ecthroi have won
and they chew on my bones

In all seriousness I do not know how I can go on being an artist when I feel so dead. I cannot access anything and I feel that all my acting is a mask behind which is so much anger and pain that it overwhelms me so I shy away from it.
I am sick. I am tired of being full of pain and anger.
I want to be happy from the depths of my toes to the lightness of my head.
I want to be free in every way – I want my body to be everything, my voice to be unleashed, my soul to fly and swirl and my eyes to see something other than blackness.
My eyes to be something other than empty.

Why does my spirit only flash and spark sometimes?
It isn’t gone, it teases me with moments of fullness and life and then hides away in some deep mark of my psyche that is hidden, so hidden that I can barely feel the pulse to let me know I am still even alive.
Not so gone that people worry about me.
Not there enough for me to be truly alive.
Not gone enough for me to abandon all hope.
Not present enough for me to believe that it will come back.

Am I going to be like this forever.
Am I going crazy? Have I lost my mind?
Am I imbalanced somewhere?

I feel like a living lie.
I am crashing and burning and I do not know how to be honest.
I don’t know how to tell anyone so I hint and I pull away and wait for someone to see and reach out to catch me or cushion my fall. Or at least say look, someone is on fire.

All my soul is on the outside of my body burning me alive
and it doesn’t hurt
because my soul is outside watching
and I wouldn’t be on fire
if my soul could feel the burning
It doesn’t care enough to come back inside
It is tired of being trapped
so it has gone on vacation
and is waiting, somewhere, for my body to catch up to it.

Maybe I’m just tired.
Maybe I just need a break.
Maybe I’m depressed.
It certainly took long enough coming.

I don’t want to die though.
That’s a good thing. I think.
I just want to sleep until it all feels better.
Or until it feels like something.

Other than pain.

Because I don’t want to deal with it and I’m sick of being weak.
That is what pain is to me – tears and weakness that I should control better.
I thought I had dealt with this but apparently I haven’t.

And I write this and I know people will think this is my every waking moment but it isn’t
I just feel like this a lot
not all the time.

I still laugh from a real place
watching cats jump into walls on YouTube
I still smile from a real place when Scott leans his head against me
I still feel love from a real place
just not a God place
because God has abandoned me
and left me to fend for myself
like I always do.
Like I always have to do.

I know he’s the one who’s footprints I’ll see later
but I think that’s a crock of shit.
I’m drifting away from him
but he isn’t stopping me
or even trying to answer me when
I pray

Why have you forsaken me again?
Again again again again again
Always forsaken in the end
He would rather watch me self-destruct
than come down and meddle with his fucked up creation

Fuck you, God.

Why can’t I just leave you and try to find a way out alone?
Why do I always pray and cry out for help that doesn’t come, help that you so sporadically ladle out that I have some hope that maybe you do care after all and you are leaving me like this to grow in some way?
I hate growing
you should know that by now

I want the growing part to be over
I want to be an adult already

I am sick of adolescence. But that is where I’m stuck
So there you have it. Two statements of where I've been at for what seems like forever.
Although I think I may be done throwing the tantrum now.
We'll see...

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Small Mercies

It seems that God will only grant me small mercies these days. No voice, no consolation from Him, just dreams that flicker in and out of my waking mind and words from the people around me that bring the light back.

Today I had two unexpected conversations that helped me, conversations about trust and letting go of fear and control.

I don’t do either very well. Maybe if I could learn to let go and let God I’d be happier.

One of my classmates told me that he is letting God steer his life. He saw through the show he just finished that if he trusted his scene partner instead of trying to control the scene, then the magic happened. He somehow gained the wisdom to apply that to his life – God as the ultimate scene partner – and he is finding so much peace right now.

I am very envious but at the same time I suddenly saw that I only trust God with reservations, which isn’t really trust at all.

That is how I trust. With reservations.

That conversation showed me that my lack of trust is really my own insecurity that in some way I won’t measure up – I will be lacking. I am not interesting enough, smart enough, experienced enough…I don’t have the beauty or knowledge to be worth spending time on. I am not worth loving. I am not worth caring for. I don’t have the faith for God to want to help me and because of that, I feel that I’ll be tested over and over until I learn to trust. Written down I see that doesn’t make any sense. How can I learn to trust if He doesn’t show me He can be trusted? But that is still what I seem to believe.

I am not alone in this either. Every weakness, every folly, people have been perfecting since the dawn of time.

People around me accept me and value me even when I think I have lost everything that makes me worthwhile. I don’t understand. I don’t understand.

To be shown such great mercy when I feel that I deserve nothing is more than I ever expected.

For some reason I have been blinded but God is still all around me. Why is it so hard to trust that to be true? Why do I feel so alone in this?

I know that I need to trust and I cannot.

He gives me small mercies anyway.

Date of Origin: November 12th 2007

I Had A Dream

I had a dream.

In my dream I had a giant moth for a companion. It’s name started with a G and had a lot of vowels in it; it was at least nine letters long. I remember seeing it written down and saying it, feeling it in my mouth. It was gone as soon as I woke up.

The moth was my guardian, protector and guide.

I was riding on its back when an Ecthroi who looked like Mr. Jenkins popped up in front of us, floating in the air, completely out of place in the world of northern trees and familiarity, completely unfazed by the surrounding, intent only on one thing.


And more than that, the tiny ball of light deep within me.

Its stare hurt me, scared me. I closed my eyes to keep the light inside so it couldn’t be stolen away. Its gaze kept going through me, I had to curl up to keep the light safe, eyes closed hands clinging to the fur covering G--------‘s body.

And then something made me stop. I stopped shaking. I let go of the fear.

I opened my eyes and uncurled my body and looked the Ecthroi in the eyes and let the light out.

Instead of going away it grew bigger until my whole self was alight, light was pouring from me and filling the world, and the Ecthroi screamed and was vanquished, vanishing into nothingness before me and the un-defeat-able light that lived within me.

We had won. I had past the test. The light that had endangered me had saved me; what has brought the attention of the Ecthroi had defeated it.

This is my life.

I am surrounded by Ecthroi, and I can’t see my moth-guardian and I feel very alone. I feel that I am the Farandoli being seduced, promised an easier way if only I stop the dance, stop the song, let the light go away and then they’ll leave me alone.

They don’t tell me what will happen if I stop, if I surrender. I will be left alone, ‘in peace’ but they don’t tell me what their peace is.

I am so tired, their call is beginning to sound reasonable. Sensible. Easier at least.

The thing is…I know what will happen if I stop dancing and I just can’t let the light die.

It hurts so badly. It’s so damn hard. I am so afraid. And I feel so alone.

I so easily forget the dreams.

They seem to be the only way that God will speak to me any more and they are so often gone when I open my eyes.

The light isn’t getting any bigger. It isn’t chasing away my enemies. They aren’t afraid, they aren’t screaming and vanishing; they’re whispering, comforting, telling me gently that my light isn’t really there, there isn’t anything to let die in the first place …there is no sun, there is only the lamp that I have changed with my childish imagination, isn’t that a silly thing to do! I feel like I am surrounded by fairy book characters – Ecthroi, the Green Lady – but I have no fairy tale saviours. There is no Aslan to save me.

Yet I know that this battle is important. That my light matters, that someday I will see the fruits of this struggle but right now I can’t see anything.

Hope is very far away.

Faith is dying.

Fear is everywhere.

The light isn’t getting any bigger. It isn’t getting any smaller although the scope of the darkness seems to be expanding. I’m being shown all the darkness and I don’t get to see any of the light except the small share that dwells within me. It seems pitiful and shabby, and defeat seems inevitable. There is no hope in the vision I am being bombarded with every day.

Why is God silent now?

Why does He only speak to me in dreams that fragment and vanish?

I despair, and the Ecthroi gather around me like vultures waiting to feast on my death. But I don’t die and the light keeps flickering.

For now.

Date of Origin: November 11th 2007

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Gilmore Girls

I watched Gilmore Girls this morning. If only my life was that uncomplicated and straightforward. I can understand their problems and see the solutions to them; most of the time they have a clear way out if they’d make the hard choices and act on them. Granted, part of the reason I have such clarity about their lives is that I’ve made many of their mistakes, and part of the clarity stems from the fact that their lives are scripted and consistently so. But it offers comfort seeing as I’m in a place where there is no clarity and thus no choices to act upon.

My life is a fog.

In truth, I’ve accepted that. It’s nice to not be constantly frustrated about the fog anymore. I admit I wistfully think about problems in life that require a clear choice and present a clear action but I know that I don’t have those right now so I am just living. That is all I see in front of me right now so that is all I do.

Okay fine. There is still frustration. I don’t like this feeling of forced stagnation. I don’t see a forward path, I don’t see anything that I can do to break this off, I don’t see how I can progress in any of my chosen fields. All I can see is the routine – wake up, eat, go to class, do the homework, do the show, find time to socialize in there somewhere before going to sleep again, and a lot of waiting, waiting, waiting. It feels like I’m waiting for news of my future but I don’t really know what I’m waiting for. I’m the one who will be creating my future at this point. There is no one else to wait for, no one who will be giving me news.

Perhaps because I don’t know how to create my own future yet, I am stuck. I’m in that horrid adolescent stage of school. It seems I am always in that stage with something in my life – first actual adolescence, then the teenage separation from my parents which actually happened just last year (complete with tedious rebellion), then towards all authority figures and now with school. I am growing towards life and I can’t say the growing stage is very enjoyable. I am getting tired of the un-enjoyable stages of life. Please, somebody tell me that this isn’t what life is! I cannot bear the thought that this is going to be my life…going from one time of fog to another. I really cannot bear it.

The one particular spark of hope from this is the revelation that I am not alone in my struggles and experiences. I am not the only one who liked a guy and didn’t tell him, to lose him to another girl and then experience fits of envy. I am not the only person who isolates myself when I’m struggling. I am not the only person who would rather live in fantasy than in reality.

The fog isn’t lifting.

But I do remember that there is a peculiar beauty in mist.

Date of Origin: October 31st 2007

Monday, October 29, 2007



All summer long I listened backstage to my friend and cast-mate talk about it, listened as he shared news about common friends who were members, resisted his encouragements to join. In September I even went so far as to join a ‘I Will Not Join Facebook’ club; members, 3. It is a very elite club.

Its membership is down to 2 these days. I have succumbed.

I have good reasons. My entire immediate family is on there, and while my youngest brother won’t check his email he does check his Facebook network, meaning I can now keep up with his life a little better. Almost everyone I know from this town is on there too, although since I see them every day it seems a moot point. I have extended family on there, as well as people I haven’t seen in ages, since childhood, since leaving home…and I’ll admit that I’ve liked catching up with people I otherwise probably would never have spoken to again.

I’ll also admit to enjoying the applications. Hatching Eggs is a lot of fun. So is 10-Second Interview; I love reading other people’s answers. Being able to electronically fight people, play Scrabble, or cast magical spells on people before zombie-biting their necks is also entertaining. I find sharing my favourite books and music to be a pleasant way to express myself. I can even share my mood, complete with a little emoticon to visually convey my inner self.

My moods, on Facebook, have been remarkably stable. I’ve been ‘loved’, ‘in love’, ‘content’. I have felt those things in the last couple weeks, so the happy little yellow ball with a kiss on it’s cheek hasn’t been lying. Exactly.

But then I realized that I was telling my brother that I was ‘fine’ when in fact I was feeling like shit.

For the majority of my time in these last few weeks I have not felt happy, positive emotions. Words like ‘lost’, ‘confused’, ‘extremely uncertain’ have been more accurate. Not that it shows much. It’s not just on Facebook that I present a happier front, although it’s easier to be cheery when you’re writing on walls and sending electronic messages. People can’t see the physical truth then; the jaw that hasn’t been able to relax since the beginning of October, the tension in my face, the hair-trigger emotions. Although even when they can see it people tend to be too wrapped up in their own world to notice, so I get away with my isolation coping mechanism.

I might have still been in denial about my emotional falseness if it hadn’t been for that note to my brother. If I can’t tell my brother what I really feel, then who can I tell? So I deleted my dishonest, chipper words and wrote something else. I don’t remember what, but it was truthful.

It still took me a while to be more honest with my Facebook page…but I am now a little, lonely looking blue hover-ball who is ‘confused because my life is just that way right now’.

Yesterday when someone asked me how I was I told them that I was having a dark tea-time of the soul.

I don’t know why, but being honest about that with people makes it seem more bearable.

Date of Origin: October 25th, 2007.

Friday, October 26, 2007


Yesterday I went for walk and railed at God for immersing me in darkness and misery and hopelessness.

I just want some hope, and you aren’t going to give me any, are you, I cried.

I woke up this morning from a dream I cannot describe – not because I don’t remember it but because it is too close to my heart to share right now.

He gave me hope.

I am such a fool! And such a childish soul! I feel very humbled and comforted all in one breath.

I asked without faith for hope, and He gave to me abundantly.

Date of Origin: October 25, 2007

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Yes, I know...Shit-tastic Isn't A Word

Well, it figures that I write a great post about how wonderfully confident I see myself, an adult all grown-up and secure, and then I have a shit-tastic day right away after.

I live next to an art gallery, a beautiful old building converted into a place to hang beautiful pictures. It has an alarm system – those pictures need protecting, even in a town so small that anyone who knows the pictures exist has a code to disarm the system anyway. That alarm, when it does go off, sounds like a giant alarm clock from Hell.

Especially when it goes off at 1 in the morning.

And again at 5.

Which it has done for the last two nights.

The explanation is that mice (of which the building, being old, has quite a few) run around and set off the motion sensors. And then it takes ten to fifteen minutes for the maintenance man to get out of his nice warm bed and turn off the alarm. And another ten or fifteen minutes for me to get back to sleep. Which adds up to at least half an hour off of my much needed REM sleep.

If I had a key I’d just run over and turn it off myself, but since I don’t I lie in my bed and bitch and moan about the ‘fucking alarm system’ and the useless nature of said system. After the second alert last night I rolled over and said “Don’t fucking set it again!” If I had a key, I’d probably go over there around 10 at night and disarm it, just to get a good night’s sleep, and then alarm it again in the morning.

Anyway, because of the giant alarm clock from Hell I woke up grumpy. Very grumpy. Try as I might I couldn’t really shake it. I’m playing a very chipper woman – the City Lady who gives presents to little poor children – in the Christmas show, and first thing this morning (of course) we worked that scene. Every time we stopped and the director gave me notes I had to bite down on my resentment and anger, my ‘unteachable spirit’ and my bad attitude. By the time we left for lunch I was in a right pissy mood.

I spent the first forty minutes of my lunch break crying. Everything from pity-party tears to sobs that rise out of you, crunching your body in the process. My eyes looked like I’d just taken a huge hit of pot, they were so red, and my nose was thoroughly plugged, but I did feel better. It’s hard to acknowledge and accept myself when I’m having a bad day. It’s easier to beat myself up for not being at 100%, which just makes me feel worse in the long run.

After the good cry and an equally good (though not as soggy) lunch, I repeated a mantra to myself. A positive rant, as I call it. “I am having a bad day. That’s okay. I am still a good person. I can’t be as big and open as P.F. wants, and that’s okay because I am still doing the best I can do for where I am at today. And that isn’t failure. I’m not failing, I’m not pathetic, and it’s okay to be weak. I am okay. I am still a good person...”, over to myself until I began, a little, to believe it.

As I stepped out the door to return to rehearsal P.F. himself was driving by and he gave me a ride. He asked me how I was doing and I said, on the verge of tears again (I feel very emotionally unstable today), that I was having a bad day. He was very understanding, and told me that it was okay if I wasn’t ‘finished’ today – ‘rehearsal is a process’, he told me. ‘We don’t open tonight, or even next week.’ And he told me he wasn’t concerned because he is confident that I know what he wants and I will get there before the show goes up.

Actually, everyone who saw me before my eyes returned to normal was very comforting and understanding, which goes to show me that my assumption that isolation is the best coping mechanism is quite flawed. It also helped me to actually believe that having a bad day is okay. Others accepted me where I was at, and that helped me to accept where I was at, and then I felt a whole lot better.

And so, though the day started out pretty shitty, it has turned into a not-so-bad day after all.

Date of Origin: October 17, 2007

Friday, October 19, 2007

The Little Woman (in my head)

I have always had a distinct mental image of myself. It’s literally a little version of me who stands in the centre of the blackness of my mind, suspended in the empty space behind my eyes, reflecting my impression of my physical and metaphysical self.

This image has changed throughout my life. The first memory of my mental self comes from my childhood. I was innocent in outlook and physicality, looking out into the world with wide open eyes, a shy yet curious gaze through a fringe of unruly hair. Unaware of any judgement that might come from my physical appearance. I think this is from my preteen years, when I was 10 or 11.

In my next image I’m older, 16, shy and gangly and awkward. In my mind I’m awkwardly tall and hunching over to hide that height, my face hidden behind unattractive glasses, my hair plain, too long, held back simply in a low ponytail. I’m wearing a t-shirt that hides my figure, high-waisted jeans practical for chores and outside work that reveal nothing of my femininity. Shy, with no confidence, wanting to make friends but too uncertain to leave the edges of the social settings I find myself in. At home only with animals and the outdoors, a girl who experiences nothing but confusion when it comes to her own species. A dreamer who reads and creates marvellous adventures in her head but can’t interact with the reality around her.

The teenage awkwardness abated as I grew used to my body, and my mental image changed. My inner height changed to match my physical height and I no longer saw myself too tall and hunched over. I saw my figure begin to assert itself in my head, although my clothes still hid most of my femininity away under the guise of modesty. My eyes reappeared in my face. I was still perplexed when it came to interacting with people my own age, but now was of an age where the adults above me began to treat me like a peer, listening and being friendly with me. Because most of that change happened at work, my adult self wore my work uniform, and my at home self was blurry and extremely confusing.

The change to what I see now was a gradual and painful one. Figuring out who I am and who I want to be; learning that I am an adult and not a child, and what that looks like in real life; figuring out how to interact with a peer set made up of people my own age…change is always chaotic but with something so integral to my mental image of my self the chaos seemed more integral to my life as well. I slipped between different mental images, particularly with my family, and it was confusing to both myself and them. It caused fights and outbursts of anger as I jumped between mental images ranging from mature independent adult to toddler in the span of five minutes. Last Christmas in particular was a time of flux that resulted in some nasty interactions with my mother, painful inflictions that thankfully haven’t left permanent damage.

And who do I see now?

A woman. Standing straight and emanating confidence as I look at the world around me. Beautiful, attractive and secure in that knowledge, feminine and strong. Capable and talented, with a strong passion for life. Alone or with people, growing comfortable with my emotions and what I want. Whatever I’m wearing, however my hair is, whether I’m wearing makeup or not, I look beautiful to myself. My appearance doesn’t depend on my externals anymore. I am a powerful, sensual, feminine adult and I know it.

Even when I am full of uncertainty my inner image doesn’t revert to the images from my uncertain times of life. I may look like a woman who doesn’t know where she’s going or why, and I may be sitting down, head in my hands, drooping or kicking and screaming and throwing a tantrum, but I am still a woman.

Yeah. I am content. Confident. Secure. Adult. Feminine. Powerful. Unthreatened.


Date of Origin - October 16th 2007

Rehearsals Again

...which means my posts will come in clumps with dates of origin on them.


Thursday, October 11, 2007

Like Mother, Like Daughter

My mother is a writer.

All of my life she has called herself a writer. I must admit that during most of my growing up she only wrote in her journal. Before she began her blog I actually didn’t see much concrete evidence of her writer status. However, she has always been a writer and I never doubted that.

I didn’t have a title until I went to acting school. After a few years I felt comfortable calling myself an actor. Well, actress – I don’t like the whole politically correct thing of everyone being actors now. I had my own title, I had my own life, things were good.

Then about a year ago I took a playwriting class.

God forbid I ever call myself a writer. I have always written, but it was more of a hobby. An interest, nothing more. I kept a diary from the age of 6, on and off, wrote several skits with my brothers, wrote a children’s novel in my teens that I never did anything with and I have at least half a dozen unfinished stories in my head and in my filing cabinet, but I was not a writer. It was an interest, an acceptable interest for an actress. Supplemental income and all that rot. So I took the class.

Within two months I began to wrestle with my titles. My teacher was calling me a writer. My classmates were calling me a writer. The other instructors in the school were calling me a writer.

I refused to accept it. Even though I was writing and nothing had ever felt so perfectly natural to me, I rejected the title with all the strength and stubborn willpower in my body.

I struggled and procrastinated like I had never done before in my entire life. The things I would do instead of writing! I suddenly found a passion for my annotated bibliography, the most pointless course I take here; I don’t think my room has ever been so clean and orderly. I vacuumed. I hate vacuuming. I washed other people’s dishes. Anything so that I could avoid writing my play.

I put an astounding amount of energy into avoiding writing. My ideas would come, my spirit would whisper to my muse, and I would evade eye contact. “If I can’t see you, then you aren’t reeeallll,” right?

I can only live in denial for so long, but it took a lot of wrestling before I broke down and called myself a writer. It did break me, even though I was alone that first time.

I go for walks when my thoughts get too jumbled up to the cemetery up on the hill, an old cemetery full of old graves of long forgotten people. I walked around the dead, watching my feet swish through the grass, scaring the grasshoppers into their rain-pattering flight. I was railing against God. Against my play. My idea, the only one I’d been given, was too big. Too dangerous. Too painful. It wasn’t fair, and I told God so.

I crumpled to the ground and with tears falling down my face I looked up to the sky and said, “I’m a fucking writer. Okay? I’m a writer. And I hate it.”

I uttered the phrase with a mouth full of resentment and bitterness. It wasn’t fair, I was an actress, I was not my mother, I refused to become my mother, and I knew this was the first step down a long and impossible backslidden slope.

Months later I finally said the words to someone else. I think my passion for writing equals my passion to act. It was strange to hear those words coming out of my mouth. The strangest part was that my resentment had disappeared. It was suddenly okay for me to admit that I could, perhaps, be a writer.

I’ve spent way too much time trying to figure out why I had such a strong negative reaction to being called a writer. I’m no closer to an answer, and no closer to knowing why it became okay. But I can call myself a writer now.

It scares me, but there is a peace in the fear along with an excitement as I explore this newly forgiven aspect of myself. The world seems like an open book, my oyster chock-full of pearls just waiting for me to come along and pick them up.

Like mother. Like daughter.

I’m okay with that now.

Saturday, October 06, 2007


It’s easier to be sceptical than successful.

It’s easier to question than to conquer.

It’s easier to rationalize your disappointments than to realize your dreams.

I don’t want the easy life anymore.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Rose Coloured Shards of Glass

Once upon a time I was told that cynicism is really disillusioned romanticism.

That explanation clicked somewhere deep within me and stuck. When I feel cynical I remember that phrase.

Sometimes I have the awareness to look around and see what ideals have just been smashed into the ground.

I hate having my ideals broken.

Seeing reality doesn’t feel worth the clarity and understanding it brings.

I am disillusioned with Rosebud.

What am I supposed to do when my ideals get broken up? I don’t want to be a cynical, jaded person. I don’t want to see the world through black glass.

Feelings seem to come in layers, emotion under emotion under emotion. The foundation of my cynicism is a deep pool of pain and sadness, rooted in grief and loss.

Would I rather feel those ‘negative’ feelings than sink into the truly negative view that I’ve been experiencing?

It hurts. It sucks. I have cried, flailed about lost and confused, been angry and deeply still.

This must be what it was like when I was three, experiencing that first betrayal.

Can I deal with the pain and learn from it without erecting blocks and fortresses to protect my spirit?

The ideals that were broken shouldn’t have been illusions. They were honourable. Realistic. Even in a fallen world, they should have held true.

I should be able to trust people.

The authorities in my life should be on my side. They should champion my cause; help me complete my training without blocking my path to success. There should be no room, no toleration, for manipulation and bullying.

People should be able to say no and be listened to.

I should have an advocate on my side when I have a conflict or misunderstanding with the school or theatre.

Authority figures shouldn’t let ego and pride shouldn’t get in the way of what is best for those beneath their power.

Adults should take responsibility for their choices. They should accept the consequences of their actions instead of pointing fingers and putting the penalties on those without power.

My friends shouldn’t lie to my face.

The corners of masks are being lifted and those behind them don’t see it happen. Darker layers of humanity are being exposed, denied and lied about. I am losing my ability to trust and I don’t know how to get it back.

I don’t want to be cynical.

I don’t want to be blind.

I don’t want to be guarded.

I don’t want to be foolishly vulnerable.

I want to find the balance, where I can be open as far as I trust, where I can respect myself and avoid unsafe situations, where I can see the faults and yet still like the people.

I want to be able to choose to trust.

Do I wish I had never seen the curtain rise and that I still believed that this place was a little part of Heaven without faults or problems?

It would have been easier if there had been time between the masks’ revelation.

Now I ask:

How do I learn to protect myself righteously instead of being defensive without due cause?

And how do I get my rose-coloured glasses back?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Clown Nose

On the path to personal growth there is always that moment of realization that growth even needs to occur. For me that means a lot of swearing. Thank goodness blog posts don’t have maximum page limits and that I can use as many expletives as I need to, or else my scholarship applications might have looked quite a bit different.

Let me start at the beginning.

It is the time of year to apply for scholarships and bursaries here in Rosebud. Every year I spend an inordinate amount of time pondering which scholarships to apply for. Every year I look over my acting evaluations to see what I can use in my applications for the various “Excellence in Acting” scholarships. Every year I am reminded of all the areas I need to grow in.

Evaluations usually bum me out.

When I started writing my applications I found myself typing, “Why the fuck am I even an actor? I hate trying to be an actor and failing repeatedly, I hate that I felt called to do this thing called theatre, I hate, I hate, I hate…and really I don’t, I’m frustrated. I feel like I can’t do this very well. Like I suck. Like I have no business even trying because I will fail, and I don’t know I’m failing until I’ve already failed because people don’t tell me what they want until it’s all over. Or else I just don’t understand what they want until it’s all over. I’m so full of frustration and self-pity that I want to throw my head under a moving train. Good thing my head is attached so I can’t throw it, and there is a singular lack of trains. Fuck.
“I feel like I have no business applying for a scholarship that has to do with excellence in acting because I’m not excellent in it. I get the same notes and I obviously am not big enough on stage and I should just quit and go shoot a hole in my head because acting is not where I will succeed in life. And with that belief how can I possibly succeed? I hate being called to something that I don’t believe I can succeed in. I hate that other people believe in me more than I believe in myself. Because I don’t. In this moment I don’t believe that I can succeed, that I can get work, that I even belong in this town. I feel like everyone is wondering what I’m doing in the acting programme, that people like N. and P.F. and the A.D. don’t think I should be here. Complete projection but I still feel that way right now. What made me think I had a chance at getting the spring show? God, I hate this mindset and I appear to be stuck here for now so perhaps I will go brush my teeth and go to bed and hope for pleasant affirming dreams.
“Fuck. Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck.”

Evaluations really bum me out.

I left off typing. As I was brushing my teeth I ranted to the mirror (a very messy endeavour, let me tell you) and came to this realization. I hate looking foolish.

A lot of my time and energy is devoted to not looking stupid. I don’t even know why. Why am I so afraid to look foolish? I wait but there is no answer.

I know that it’s getting in my way. My fear of looking foolish stops me from going bigger in my acting. It sounds idiotic, but it honestly feels like I will die if I look foolish. Maybe not physically, but if I look or feel stupid, something important in me will die and never come back. I mean it and I don’t know why. As a result I feel like I will continue to fail and fail and fail, that I will never lose that fear, that I will always for eternity be blocked.

I find it very frustrating that I am continually struggling with the same shit, over and over again. A year ago I was on a high. I believed that I had figured out how to forgive myself and that I had beaten this fear thing for good. I was in such a place of hope and life – and naivety. A very little part of me wishes I was still there. The harsher realities of continued growth can be hard to deal with, like realizing that I still have an unhealthy dose of fear. Only now I’m far enough on the journey to have the added realization that if I don’t conquer this fear, I will have to give up theatre. I’m far enough to see that I get to choose the life I want, to see that one path will give me life and the other will deaden my soul. What consequences am I willing to accept?

Illness and injury have a way of sparking reflection in me. As a result, I’ve spent a lot of time in introspection this month. I also feel like I do my learning in chunks, which gives me alternate feelings of hope when I realize I’ve conquered a bunch of things and depression when I realize a whole bunch of things I need to learn.

It’s particularly depressing when the things I need to learn are ones I thought I’d learned already. Fear. It is a huge problem that I just can’t seem to lick. It isn’t just in acting. It rears its ugly head in every aspect of my life.
I’m afraid of rejection in relationship, so I insulate myself from that potential pain by isolating myself – keeping my true thoughts to myself and saying partial truths that will keep me a part of the group. It’s worse than outright lying because parts of me get through and then I don’t know where I am anymore. Only some things get censored…the things that I’m afraid will get me rejected by those I care about. Fear ties up my tongue and shakes my brain, jumbling my thoughts into incoherency and thus safety, since I can’t express an incoherent thought. And it usually isn’t even big things. Sometimes the only thing stopping me from speaking is the fear that I will look like a loser if I admit that I like Justin Timberlake’s music, or that I not only remember the spell Hermione uses to unlock doors, but can pronounce it correctly.
I don’t know where this coping mechanism came from, but it could ruin my life. I have put distance between me and the people I love. I thought it was an invisible, victimless situation I was putting myself into but people know when I am keeping pieces of myself secreted away. I hate how I am damaging the relationships that matter the most to me. It is so crippling and lonely to be isolated! I hate it with more devastated passion than I have felt towards anything in a while.
To realize that if I don’t step out into the fear and discomfort I will lose everyone I love is the scariest realization I have ever had. The stakes are the highest they have ever been. It scares me to see that something I do without thinking, something that is an old easy habit, can have that kind of an effect, that big of a consequence. I have to grow through my fear or accept being alone for the rest of my life.

Fear of failing, of being inadequate, of looking foolish, of being rejected. So much fear that I thought I had dealt with already! And fears that I didn’t know I had. I am afraid I will fail, and in failing I will look foolish. Being inadequate will make me feel stupid. Being rejected will hurt, and I will feel like an idiot. I obviously have some really negative connotations attached to looking and feeling foolish. I wish I knew why. It’s a very powerful force in me, so powerful that I don’t know how I haven’t noticed it before. Just the thought of looking stupid causes me physical stress…my breath gets shallow and my heart speeds up. It bothers me greatly that I don’t understand something with so much power over me. I have to hope that I can break that power and achieve a freedom that I have only just begun to comprehend even exists.

It’s a good thing that I can see growth in myself or I’d be in a dark, dark place right now. I am further than I used to be on this journey of life and artistry, though. I’ve learned some good things about myself. I do have physical instincts on stage, which was a thrilling surprise to me. I didn’t believe that I had physical impulses in me, but now I know that I simply didn’t know how to hear them. I have gotten so much better at listening to my body on and off stage, moving when I feel like it, taking care of myself when I need it, acknowledging and respecting where I am at on any given day. I am getting to be so comfortable, so unafraid in my body that I am able to just move without thought, to follow my body – it still feels like a miracle to me. And I am better able to forgive the days when I don’t follow my instincts and don’t respect my limits than I used to be. I’m far from perfect – but I’m not looking for perfection anymore.

At least not all the time.

I know now that I desire to live a life of freedom, even though that scares the hell out of me. I’m realizing that safety isn’t all its cracked up to be. All I have to do is read A Wrinkle In Time to see that. Freedom isn’t safe but its good. And I want that more than anything. I want to grow towards freedom, openness, honesty and foolishness. I want to be one of God’s fools even though I don’t know what that means yet. I want to know in myself what I am actually thinking and feeling, I want to risk with those I love, I want to be able to tell others what I want and think. I want to stop wasting so much time and energy hiding from others and myself.

I am no longer content with my tame lions.

Speaking this desire aloud, writing it down and sharing it with people, feels like a step towards freedom, a step out of that isolated safety that I have been clinging to with utter loathing. As if telling the universe what I desire will help to make it happen. If nothing else in a year I’ll be able to read over this post and see if I fought for my life or if I chickened out and spent a year killing my spirit.

Because in a year from now, I won’t be writing scholarship applications. I’ll be graduating with my FRSA.

And I want nothing more than to have earned myself a red nose on a string – the sign of the fool, the sign of my growth, the sign of my freedom.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

One Word Answers

From Biscotti word answers...

1. Yourself: growing
2. Your spouse (boyfriend): recovering
3. Your hair: pulled-back
4. Your mother: intriguing
5. Your father: happy
6. Your favorite item: books
7. Your dream last night: vanished
8. Your favorite drink: water
9. Your dream car: Mustang
10. The room you are in: office
11. Your ex: non-existant
12. Your fear: appearing foolish
13. What you want to be in 10 years: unafraid
14. Who you hung out with last night: Cari
15. What you're not: perfect
16. Muffins: poppyseed
17: One of your wish list items: printer
18: Time: precious
19. The last thing you did: typed
20. What you are wearing: comfort
21. Your favorite weather: alive
22. Your favorite book: Ender's Shadow
23. The last thing you ate: chocolate
24. Your life: amazing
25. Your mood: content
26. Your best friend: calming
27. What you're thinking about right now: S.
28. Your car: Land Yacht
29. What you are doing at the moment: living
30. Your summer: good
31. Your relationship status: single-attatched
32. What is on your TV: none
33. What is the weather like: drizzly
34. When was the last time you laughed: today

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Second Day of School

Before you start to get used to this, know that I have no intention of keeping you posted on a day to day basis of what I am doing in school. Why? Because that would be very boring.

Not because I think you aren't interested in what I might be doing in school, but because I am not really doing anything. Today my school consisted of coming to the office to see what my schedule was exactly...three classes. That's what I have this month, ladies and gents. Three classes. Dance (which I'll have to take it easy in because of the mono), Chorale (which is an audit) and Chapel, which isn't really a class but I have to attend anyway. Now, in October I begin rehearsals for the next show I'm in and then in November I begin another class...but this month I get to take it easy and get my health back. Thank God.

So now that I've kept you up to date I think I will go home and eat and read. I must keep up my education, after all.

Monday, September 03, 2007

First Day of School

I'm working at the office today, helping new students by taking their money. It doesn't sound helpful, seeing as students don't tend to have a lot of money, but it does mean that their education gets paid for since I'm not actually keeping their money - I pass it on to the school accounts.
This does mean I have a lot of extra time to do nothing. I forgot my books at home - I planned on finishing "Who Has Seen The Wind" today. I haven't ever read that book before, can you believe it? 23 years old and never read a Canadian classic. Thanks to Troll for filling the gaps in my education - he also introduced me to blues, which I had never heard! I guess when your parents listen to Pink Floyd and Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show on one hand, and various soothing tunes without band names on the other, blues kind of gets lost. Guess Who is the closest I've gotten.
However, W.O. got left at home so now I have nothing to enrich my mind with except the internet, and the benefits are somewhat doubtable.
To be perfectly frank...I'm bored.
But my life is really good so I don't mind.
By which I mean that I'm over the worst of my mono...and I feel normal again.
Smiles all around...

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

No Laughing Matter

In my last post I informed you all that I have contracted mononucleosis. I made light of it, which is, quite frankly, what most people’s response is to this illness. When my youngest brother found out he just laughed and then crowed, “The kissing disease!” before laughing some more. Even my dad, the health professional, didn’t seem too concerned about it. So you have mono. You’ll get over it.

To be honest, my initial reaction to hearing that I was sick with something more long term than, say, strep throat, was to almost burst into tears. I was disoriented – how could this be true? How did this happen? I immediately felt like a ball of contagion. But those feelings waned, particularly when everyone I talked to laughed and joked about it, calling me Mono Girl, pretending to cover their mouths when I walked by or threatening to sic me on people – “Go spit in his drink, he’s irritating me”. And it is funny. When my cast mate sang, “Supercalafragalistic-mononucleosis, if your glands get swollen then it’s really quite atrocious” I had to laugh. How can that be taken seriously?

I was doing okay. I was a little sick, that was all, and I was washing my hands a lot more than normal, but I was fine. I heard that there was a vague plan for an understudy in case I got worse, but I doubted that would be needed. I was fine.

Until that Friday night. The glands in my throat were so swollen that swallowing and talking were becoming difficult and painful – not so great at the best of times, but as an actor that spells death. I had no strength. I was in a daze, spending all my energy to stay upright, never mind doing my blocking and lines (which I also somehow managed to do – autopilot is a powerful tool). S. sat next to me every time we were off-stage together, holding my hand and bringing me whatever he thought might help me. After the show he brought me into the hospital, where the doctor told me what they’ve all told me before and since. It’s a virus, we can’t do anything for you, you have to rest and drink lots of water and just wait it out. I did get some Prednisone to take the swelling down but that was about all they could do. They sent me home.

The next day I slept. And slept some more. My understudy did my part in the show and I slept, too tired to even – really – care, although it did feel strange to look at a clock and think, “I’d be done my hair now, N. must be getting into his beard, S. is just putting on his moustache while r. puts in his contacts…” and know that I wasn’t there.

I felt like I had failed in some way, like my body had let me down, like I had let down everyone involved with the show. I couldn’t do what I was supposed to. I was a failure.

My health has improved every day since then, with liquids and rest, but I’m still tired and my throat is still sore. At least I can talk now without wincing and I have a bit of an appetite. I’ve done the show this week, although I am supposed to tell the stage manager every day whether I’m doing the next day or not.

You’d think that feeling better would make me happy but now that my brain has some function again I simply feel like crying.

I didn’t really even know why until S. and I went for a walk. He asked me yet again if I was really going to be able to do the show tomorrow and I almost snapped at him. YES! I just wanted to scream. I’m doing the goddamn show tomorrow, I know I’m sick and you think I should be in bed but I can do this. I can. FUCK!

I went home to get some more of the Advil I’ve been eating like candy and sat in my room and cried. It’s hard enough feeling ill without everyone around me doubting whether I can be trusted to do the show and take care of myself. I feel like now people don’t trust me either to do the show or to know my limits.

And for S. of all people to constantly question my choices made things so much harder to bear. In the midst of my tears he walked into my house. “What’s wrong?” he asked me. I spilled out my woes and he held me while I cried, and then he told me that he wasn’t upset with me, although he doesn’t think I should be doing the show. He’s more upset with the theatre because he thinks it is unreasonable of them to expect me to put a show ahead of my long-term health. He thinks I shouldn’t be allowed to finish the show. He is worried for me and it comes out as impatience and anger.

That did make me feel better. I understand misplaced frustration. I’m a well of it right now. It’s not bad enough that I have to feel tired, that my throat hurts, that I have no energy, that my throat is filled with phlegm that tastes like rot. I have to give a day’s notice of whether I’m even going to show up to do my job. I can’t kiss or even fucking touch the man I love without us both wondering if I’ve just infected him. I feel isolated and it’s not just the moratorium on kissing. I feel like I can’t touch anyone – or anything – unless I’ve just washed my hands, and even then I feel questionable. I haven’t got the energy to socialize and no-one else has the time to slow down to my new level. And as much as I hate these things I understand that they are all the reality that I have to adjust to because I am the abnormality in this equation.

One of my cast mates told me to tell him when I got sick of the mono jokes. “I don’t want to be the one that pushes you over the edge,” he said.

This did certainly stop being funny, but I don’t think I’m going to stop people from laughing about it.

I think I need all the laughter I can get.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

One is the Lonliest Number...

...and I should know, since I have mono.

Which means '1' as S. so gleefully told me.

He wasn't so gleeful when he found out that I can't kiss him for two months.

Lonely indeed.

Monday, August 06, 2007

83 Random Things

This is for Troll. Happy Belated Birthday!

1. I just realized that if S. and I ever broke up I couldn’t get rid of all the things that remind me of him without getting rid of half of my possessions, a lot of my journals and writing, and several pieces of art that I have created in the last year.

2. I have woken up with a song in my head pretty consistently for the last two weeks. The songs vary from “Got Me Where You Want” by Our Lady Peace to “Stand” by R.E.M. – other bands include Sarah McLaughlan and Three Days Grace. It’s been weird – I don’t remember this happening so often before.

3. I dreamt that I was performing dinner music with my friend R. and two patrons wouldn’t let us leave the room, to the point of the man punching me in the face several times with blood and all. I dream like this all the time so it doesn’t disturb me anymore. I’m not sure it ever did. Violence in my dreams fascinates me on some visceral level.

4. I only have to hear a song once or twice to learn the melody, and only a few times after that (if I’m listening carefully) to learn all the lyrics.

5. Since I was 2, I’ve had Top 40 songs in my repertoire. I believe my parents gave me a Madonna record for my 2nd birthday, which I memorized and danced to in my own toddler way.

6. Although I’ve had the newest Harry Potter book since the Thursday after it came out (and it is Tuesday July 31st as I type this), I haven’t gotten any further than Chapter 3. I’m not sure what’s wrong with me.

7. I have spent a lot of time with S. this weekend though. He helped me move and among all the stress of that we bickered more than we ever have – and yet I still wanted to have him around.

8. And we still haven’t had a big fight yet, after 13½ months.

9. Although I don’t know what a big, serious fight would be anyway. It could be that our fighting styles simply look like an extended argument (which we have had) instead of the rip-roaring, swearing, throwing-things fights I’ve seen and am waiting to have myself.

10. I hope I never have a fight like that.

11. I am a packrat. I’m staring at the peacock feather that a co-worker gave me when I worked at A&W four years ago.

12. I worked at A&W for 18 months, 16 of which I was a supervisor, in order to jump-start my schooling here. I paid for a year of tuition and living expenses out of pocket without any financial stress. It was wonderful.

13. I want to be in the summer show next year but I won’t be able to afford it even if I do get cast.

14. My brother’s wedding conflicts with the show anyway – and for some reason that seems like a more legitimate reason to turn down the show than the fact that I would be starving and homeless.

15. I dreamt that my brother and his fiancé had a baby girl with perfect light brown skin and dark hair and they named her after me, so now I really have to go to their wedding. (I’d be there anyway – don’t feel any pressure to name your future daughters after me, D&D!)

16. Once I discovered that it was ‘cool’ for Christians to like U2 my interest in them flagged. I still have a hard time admitting that I like their music well enough to own an album or two (which I do).

17. I have a naïve faith that everything will work out somehow, even if I have to work hard or struggle through to the happy ending. This applies to everything in my life – school, money, relationships…

18. Whenever I listen to country music I realize that I like it more than I’ll admit to. The songs seem to have more happy messages than the depressing emotional/meaningless sex songs that tend to fill the rock and pop stations.

19. I don’t understand my youngest brother’s relationship and I don’t like the dysfunction I see within it but I stay silent. And I don’t quite know why.

20. I have started more stories than I have finished but the good ones still live in my head, clamouring for completion.

21. I think that a monarchy is the only system of government that has even a chance of working. There needs to be one person who is ultimately in charge, someone who can take responsibility for the good and bad decisions.

22. I’ve harboured a secret dream of being the dictatress of Canada since I was about 15 – part of my youthful idealism clashing with harsh reality.

23. I get distracted very easily. For instance, my plan for the afternoon was to file receipts and organize things in my still not completely unpacked room, and instead I just took out things for supper, walked to the office to get a Student Loan application form to find out that they are locked early again, unloaded and reloaded the dishwasher, swept the entire house, and somewhere in there I took many pictures of a small tree that is pushing it’s way to freedom and life through the asphalt of a friend’s driveway. It makes me ridiculously happy to see that small sapling winning out over man’s rock hard world.

24. I love trees. Inordinately so. A part of me was an Ent in a former life.

25. I’ve recently been introduced to Taoism by Pooh and Piglet. I think they’re on to something that needs to be incorporated back into our all too Western philosophies and religions.

26. I like listening to soundtracks, even the ones without lyrics. Sometimes I prefer them that way, actually. The Narnia soundtrack is very evocative of the film, I find. So is the one for The Pirates of the Caribbean.

27. Sometimes when I listen to music without lyrics I see colours and shapes and essences of things that just fit the music. It’s very pretty.

28. I think that some numbers are better than others. I also have months of the year and days of the week that I prefer. May 5th is my least favourite date. It is so round and oppressive and heavy. February 28th is also round but not so heavy – it has some light in it although it is kind of serious. Like Pooh. September 17th – ahh. Such a nice date. Sharp in a kind of dangerous coyote way, it fascinates me and makes me happy all at once. There is no logic to how this works. It isn’t a system, although people have tried to analyze it. It is simply how the numbers and words hit my mind.

29. I write with my left hand but I cut watermelon (and indeed, everything) with my right hand. I wear my watch on my right arm. I think of myself as ambidextrous with a slight preference for my left side.

30. When I was a young girl, I wanted to have either auburn or black hair, and either green or violet eyes. I couldn’t decide which one was better, or which combination would be more striking.

31. Now I’m content with my light brown hair with blonde streaks, and my grey-blue eyes that occasionally look green.

32. I wear contacts now for the first time in my life. I like being able to see on stage but I don’t like it enough to replace my glasses, much to S.’s relief. He likes my glasses.

33. I have put a lot of thought into what illegal career I would pursue if I had to pick one. I think being an assassin is cool, but I’d be able to handle being a thief – I’d love to be good enough to steal from large famous art galleries and museums, as well as pick the petty pocket here and there.

34. I like action movies. I’ve never admitted this – I always felt a bit foolish because it goes against my whole ‘intellectual’ reputation. Plus I’m a girl. And S. doesn’t like them. So I feel a bit silly and defiant, but now I’m admitting it. I like action movies. It’s great if they have a plot but they don’t even need to have a great one for me to enjoy it. There you go.

35. 83 random facts about myself is proving to be easier than I thought it would be. I wonder if anyone else will take it on and do this too? Perhaps I will have started a trend – huge long lists of personal facts on an international electronic forum.
Probably not.

36. I like hats but I’m not so sure that the hats I like look good on me. I know I pull of the cute ball-cap look, but I like feminine hats and every one I’ve ever tried on I haven’t liked on me. I don’t think it’s fair.

37. But since every other piece of clothing I like looks good on me, I guess I shouldn’t complain. I love – no, I delight in – the fact that the fashion industry caters to people who are my size. It means I never have to worry about finding something that will fit me. It’s glorious.

38. I also feel a bit guilty about that sometimes because I know there are women who can’t find stores that even carry their sizes. I wonder if those women hate me for my svelte physique. I hope they don’t. I got good DNA, that’s all.

39. I just bought a filing cabinet and I am discovering how much I like filing things. It’s so organized! Ahh…

40. I get cold even in the summer, so that people mock me for wearing hoodies and sweaters at 8 or 9 in the evening on a blistering hot July day. What can I say? Svelteness has it’s down side.

41. I have often felt like a horrible Christian because I don’t see things the same way as the leaders of the churches I have grown up in. The biggest area in which I don’t see eye to eye is homosexuality. I don’t think it’s what God planned but like so many other things, human sexuality got bent and broken. Lots of things aren’t how they were planned out in the beginning. I know, this one is actually laid out in the Bible (at least in the Old Testament), but I still don’t understand why God would allow someone to be drawn to their own sex from childhood and then deny them romantic relationship. So I feel like I’m missing some integral Christian something because I see two men giving each other flowers and sweet nothings on Valentines Day in New York City and I think, “That’s sweet”, while some of my classmates see that and are repulsed. I don’t understand! I don’t think I ever will. I’m not sure I want to.

42. When I took the playwriting course last summer, I had to list five things that worried me. One of those things was that I am too liberal. The above random fact reminds me of that – it is the exact phrase that runs in my head when I ponder how my personal beliefs run against what I hear from the pulpit.

43. I went to a family gathering a year ago and one of my young teenage cousins asked me if I loved S. I said I didn’t know. About a week later I was getting ready to go to work and I was thinking about that moment for some reason and I realized my answer had changed to yes. I stopped dead, staring out the window over the sink at the white metal fire hall outside. I spent half of the ten minute drive to work crying and half of it laughing, and the whole day I was quiet for fear that something would send me over the edge into either emotion.

44. I get upset about how the world is and I don’t know what to do about it. It makes me feel quite helpless because I can’t see how to make people care about those around them and that seems to be the root cause of all the problems I see. Think about it – if the majority of people really cared about those around them, perhaps there wouldn’t be as much poverty or abuse. Maybe we would reach out to those around us and help them out when they needed a hand instead of living our lives according to rules and systems that don’t contain any mercy.

45. I think that we are headed towards some kind of meltdown – either political, social or environmental – and my naïve sense of well-being keeps me from panicking. I’ll either live or die and really there isn’t much I can do about it now anyway.

46. I really like dark chocolate.

47. I would like to eat more healthily, and I know that if I had a vanity reason to do so it would happen faster but because I don’t gain weight I have to work on eating properly.

48. I am very vain. I always have been.

49. I used to believe that if I wasn’t the smartest I was worth nothing. I am letting go of that but it still irritates me if someone is better with words than I am. I didn’t know this until last year when I took a Shakespeare class and one of my classmates had a BA in English and thus, by simple dint of education, knew more than I did. I laugh about it now but the little bruise is still there on my ego and can be poked. Painfully.

50. Speaking of bruises, I have several mystery ones right now. I got a big deep purple one on my butt from something – I couldn’t remember what I did but I remember swearing about it when it happened, how odd, eh? There’s a green-yellow one on my shin and that could have been anything. My shins are like delicate butterflies. The least jarring and they’re damaged.

51. I once chipped my shin bone by tripping up a set of stairs. I stumbled, struck my shin, and the next thing I remember I was sitting at the top of the stairs (I was two steps from the top) rocking back and forth, holding my injured leg with tears streaming silently down my face. My mom, who was in the next room, didn’t even know I was hurt until she saw my damp face when I finally got up and limped into the room.

52. Whenever I’ve gotten hurt (like chipping bones, not stubbing toes) I don’t remember the actual pain-inducing event. I cracked a bone in my foot and I’m not sure how – I was leaning over a fence, I lost my balance, then I was sitting on the side of the fence I started on curled up, rocking back and forth holding my injured foot with tears silently streaming down my face. Again no one knew I was hurt until I limped into a populated area. A trend? Perhaps.

53. I miss having pets. I still have a dog, and I miss seeing her every day and tending for her every need. I think I need a pet to get me out of my own self.

54. I have really good teeth and I’ve never had braces.

55. I had all four canine teeth pulled at once. That was to keep the next in line adult teeth from growing in crooked, so that I wouldn’t need braces. See? Tricky, tricky.

56. Every time I see the White Sox emblem I don’t see the word ‘sox’. I see the word ‘sex’. So does my dad. One day my dad and I took a White Sox hat and with a Sharpie® changed it to what we see. I wear the hat around town and people’s brains fill in the blacked out bit. My friends have all noticed it, but it still took the quickest of them at least an hour to realize what my hat said, and that was with a bit of prodding on my part.

57. I’ve never had one, but I’ve always secretly wanted a black eye. And a broken jaw. Just to know what they feel like. And for some reason when I was a child I thought black eyes were cool.

58. I also thought it would be a good skill to learn to stand still for three hours at a time. I read a book about a boy who was a prince but didn’t know it, but his father had trained him in the ways of royalty and being able to stand still was a royal trait I guess. I had a crush on this prince boy and wanted to be just like him. I never succeeded. Which is good, because I rather like being a girl.

59. Women complain about getting their periods, but I see it as a feminine mystery. We have the power to create life in our bellies! It’s a miraculous, mysterious thing, and the monthly cycle is a part of that power. Yes, it can be inconvenient and downright painful, but it’s still kind of cool.

60. I have a bit of a flirtation with goddess worship. I don’t worship any goddesses, but I like the idea of God being both masculine and feminine. A wholly masculine God doesn’t captivate or understand me the way I need to be captivated and understood. I think God gets that. I certainly hope he does – otherwise I may be inadvertently damning myself to Hell.

61. I believe that those who die can watch and look over us and even send us messages – the intercession and protection of Saints is very real to me.

62. When I get very scared at night and all the scary movies I’ve seen crowd into my shadows, I ask the Virgin Mary for a mother’s calming touch as I pray to God for spiritual protection. People I respect don’t agree with this. I respectfully disagree with them. The mother of God deserves our respect, and to those who say we shouldn’t worship anyone other than God I say that respect is different than worship. Look it up in the dictionary.

63. I got my ears pierced when I was 2. I sat on the step of the place that pierced ears and I wouldn’t leave until I got what I wanted. It strikes me as funny, and sad, that my parent’s didn’t just pick me up and carry me, kicking and screaming, to the car instead of ‘acquiescing to my request’. Good thing I wasn’t an only child. I would be such a bitch.

64. I did continue reading the Harry Potter book – and today (August 3rd – this is taking some time, people, sorry) I discovered that my copy is missing 33 pages, from page 257 to page 288. The misery that has caused me was assuaged by S., who consoled me (I was almost in tears) and Troll, who leant me his copy during the show so I could read the missing pages and continue with my copy now. S. also found the copy that exists online in case I couldn’t find a copy to borrow, which touched me deeply because S. could care less about Harry Potter and whether he lives or dies. I found it very sweet that he would go to so much effort to console me.

65. In all the realm of illegal substances, the only one that has ever really fascinated me is LSD. Since learning about flashbacks my curiosity has waned. The Parental Units can breathe now.

66. For the last two days (August 4th and 5th – if you have a problem with how long this is taking, try doing it yourself. It takes a lot of thought to not repeat myself. Anyway…) some gland in the right side of my throat has been swollen to the point of being able to touch that dangly thing in the back of my throat. It hurts a lot and this morning I didn’t think I could swallow anything thicker than pudding. Since the long weekend means that all the doctor’s offices are closed I ended up going to the Emergency Ward (sorry Dad) where I was told I likely have strep throat. I am now sucking on a very medicated tasting lozenge and talking as little as possible in order to not lose my voice.

67. I’ve worn glasses since I was 2. Before I got them I was a very obedient child in public but once I could see I immediately began going and looking at things like toys, leaving my parents to freak out when they discovered I was missing.

68. I steal blankets, pillows and bed space when I sleep with other people. I imagine I steal them when I’m sleeping alone too, only there isn’t anyone to witness this event.

69. Apparently I also respond violently to those around me in my sleep, with elbows to the face and kicks to the limbs.

70. My dad and my brothers and I share a sense of humour that my poor mother doesn’t get. Example: The phrase, “I’ve got to go take a pee” – don’t take pee, leave it. It’s not nearly as messy.

71. When I’m driving alone in my car listening to the radio, I sing along and pretend I’m in a band performing at a concert.

72. My laptop (which was a present from my parents – thank you parents) has one of those little mouse pads in it, with ‘palm check’ which is a curiosity to me, but I don’t know what it means and I don’t care enough to find out.

73. I talk to myself a lot. Almost every time I’m alone I hold conversations with myself, sometimes telling stories, sometimes going over past experiences or possible future confrontations. I’m always afraid someone will walk in and hear me, but if it’s happened no-one has told me yet.

74. I would like to have a particular scent that is mine. You read about women who always smell like a certain perfume – I’d like that, but I can’t find a perfume or scent that I like that doesn’t give me a headache or hasn’t been claimed by others I know. Plus it’s a lot of bother to always make sure I wear a certain scent. I suppose just smelling like a clean me is going to have to do.

75. Occasionally I hear words according to their spellings. The first time this happened was when my uncle asked me how my dad was enjoying the ‘log hall’ – at least, that’s how I heard it. He actually said ‘log haul’ (Dad was hauling logs at the time). It gets very confusing because people repeat themselves but it doesn’t help – I’ve heard ‘burleigh’ (which apparently isn’t even a word) instead of ‘burly’ and ‘b-day’ instead of ‘bidet’. It doesn’t happen often but when it does people look at me like I’ve lost my mind while I look at them like they’re speaking Chinese.

76. I like to read the dictionary. Okay, I don’t know if this one counts because if you read this blog often enough you already know that. So I’ll tag onto it that as a child I decided to read through the entire children’s fiction section of the Grande Prairie Library in alphabetical order (which is how they’re filed in case you don’t ever go into the fiction section of a library). I didn’t end up succeeding – I didn’t like some of the authors – but it did introduce me to people like Avi, who I really enjoyed, and Lloyd Alexander, who I can’t help but think I would have run into anyway but perhaps not so soon. It also led me to a series called “The Swallows and The Amazons” about some English children who learned how to sail, and knew Morse code and Semaphore, and had the coolest adventures ever. Because of them, I learned Morse code and about half the Semaphore alphabet before running out of steam (you can only get so far with a code like that without anyone else to talk to, but I was so fluent in Morse that I could read and write with Morse as quickly as I could with the Roman alphabet).

77. When I got older I decided to try the adult section. Once again I didn’t actually read them all, but this time I was wiser and knew that would happen so I just looked at them all and read the ones that caught my interest. I believe that is how I met Terry Pratchett (well, re-met actually, since I had met him in the children’s section and then forgotten about him – Truckers, Diggers, and Wings are such wonderful books that it shames me a little to admit that I’d forgotten them but thank goodness I was reintroduced so the shame can be abated in the light of the fact that since that reintroduction I’ve read almost everything else that he’s ever written).

78. I love that my lava lamp is called a ‘peace light’ on the box. I also love how the wax makes fantastic shapes before resolving into the typical up and down balls. It reminds me of dancing aliens or how cave architecture – what are they called? Stalactites? – would look if it could move in the wind.

79. I have always wanted to see if I could be self-reliant. At one point in my life I wanted to own a farm and have sheep, chickens, either cattle or goats, horses to plough and travel with, and enough land to keep me and my critters alive. Eventually I realized that I couldn’t do all the work on my own but I still think it would be a worthwhile endeavour. It would be a lot of work, but surely it would be very satisfying, to know that all your work was keeping you alive in a very direct way?

80. I also considered the following careers – family doctor, surgeon, exotic dancer/stripper, security guard, police officer, librarian (this could still end up as my day job), thief, computer hacker, spy, secretary, lawyer, biologist, writer (this one is still on the table), mechanic, truck driver, something in the oil field, high class hooker (like Xavier Hollander – don’t worry, Mom and Dad, this was more a flight of fancy than an actual consideration) or escort, stewardess (back when they were still called stewardesses), pilot, Mary Kay consultant (I tried this one for a very brief time and decided the MK women were too crazy for me. Their almost fanatical belief in their product – which is very good makeup but not enough for me to get into a religious fervour over – scared me. Greatly.), archaeologist, philosopher, anthropologist, university professor (probably in English or Philosophy), linguistics, or someone who studies things like symbology, which I was into long before it was all cool from the Da Vinci Code. (Please read that last bit in a snooty tone.) Oh, I also went through my required little girl phase of wanting to become a vet, but I added several other facets to that phase, including sheep shearer and jockey (I did read all of the Black Stallion books). I also wanted to be a magical entity or a minor god (I suppose I should have wanted to be a minor goddess but meh.) and failing that, a princess. Or dictatress or ruler of the world/universe/country/or at least a small island somewhere where I could make all the rules.

81. I sometimes think that pictures of people actually have little cameras in the eyes through which the original people are watching me. I know that isn’t true – but sometimes I turn pictures over when I’m changing, just in case.

82. I like stuffed animals. I have a lot of them, most of which are sitting in a box in storage at my parent’s place. However, some of them made their way here. Piglet, Mr. Rabbit, Mad Cow (who looks crazy and is a little scary but since he’s so small it’s okay – Piglet could take him if Piglet wasn’t so timid), Gregory the dragon, Lamb (who is a boy), Lulu (who is a girl lamb but has one ear missing from some adventure we went on when I was a toddler), Rocco the Raccoon (his tag says Ringo but I keep calling him Rocco so I guess that’s his name now), Mr. White Bear who tells me stories and Yellow Bear, who S. keeps insisting is a boy but since I’ve known her since I was 9 months old I think I know better, are all sitting in various places around my room. Rocco, Mr. Bear and Yellow Bear live on my bed, the reasons being that Yellow Bear has supreme seniority over all the other stuffies and Mr. Bear and Rocco were gifts from S. I also have Ernie and Bert living in questionable harmony, a gift from my father. S. thinks they’re gay but I’m not so sure.

83. I took two years of violin lessons, during which I went through three levels of Suzuki training. My violin teacher didn’t understand how I learn music until my very last lesson, when he told me to turn my back and repeat what he was playing on the piano on my violin. I did, almost perfectly. I learn by ear, see, not by reading the music. I sensed a great disappointment in him then. I think he wished he had known that earlier because we could have gotten a lot further if he hadn’t been trying to teach me based only on reading the music. I can read music – I see the black spot and I know which note to play – but I can’t read rhythm without a lot of stopping and counting, and it’s like listening to a severe dyslexic trying to read (it’s just painful) because it still doesn’t come out right. I still don’t know what it is supposed to sound like. But once I hear someone else play the notes, it’s as if they put the emphasis in the right spot and then it all clicks together like magic. It’s the most amazing thing, that moment of clarity. I wonder if that is what it is like when people first learn to read. I learned to read when I was 4 or 5 and I don’t remember it – as far as my memory is concerned I’ve been able to read forever. I sometimes feel like I got gypped because I don’t have that memory of the first time the black marks made coherent sense but I don’t complain because at least reading has always been easy, like breathing, for me and I’d rather not have to struggle with the words I love so much.

Well. I almost didn’t realize I was done. 83 goes a lot faster than I thought it would.

I just hope Troll doesn’t misread this title as 183 Random Things – I don’t think I have the time or patience for a list like that…

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

8 Random Things

1. I like writing lists. As a child I would write long lists of information copied verbatim from books that I owned. Eventually I realized I didn't need multiple copies of the same info. It did help me learn and retain stuff though (I think...)

2. I chew on the inside of my cheek when I'm thinking. My mom always assumes that I'm thinking something interesting but it can be my mind wandering or making a grocery list - or thinking of deep and profound things to say. Odds are good either way.

3. For example, I often zone out, chewing my cheek and thinking about what my life would be like if I could do magic or if I had different supernatural abilities. One of my reoccurring faves is shape shifting...

4. I like being nude. If I could I would walk around the house completely naked. Clothes just feel so confining.

5. At the same time, I really like clothes. I have far too many of them. I either feel comfortable or really damn sexy in almost everything I own - some magic items are both comfy and hot. ;)

6. I really like my body - except the stretch marks on my thighs, which I got from growing (thanks to my connective tissue disorder).

7. That said, I'm beginning to like wearing shorts anyway.

8. I have vivid dreams. I always have. I usually write them down and read them years later. Most of the time I remember them. Sometimes I don't.

Saturday, July 14, 2007


I just want to spend a day snoozing - I fed a scout breakfast this week and that meant I got up hours earlier than tired...

(Scouts are people here to check out the school - they spend a week here working and taking classes and what not so they get an idea of what this place is before they commit - although no one really knows what they've gotten themselves into until they're here...[evil laugh, although it happened to me too)])

Lots of parenthetical

But I'm still happy so the tiredness is easier to handle.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Not much to say, but what's here is good

The weather is nice.

I'm in love.

Some of my creative juices have been flowing again, which is great.

My new house should be ready soon.

I like my life right now.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Can’t Buy This

The sun was shining, illuminating occasional puffy white clouds and a big, blue Prairie sky. One arm tingled, refreshed and chilled from the AC, while one leg of my jeans was almost too hot from the sun shining in the window of S.’s ‘cranberry-purple’ car. The grey asphalt curved away, disappearing into the ditch as we drove along on our way to go grocery shopping. It’s nothing earth shattering, but it makes me happy.

We’ve gone shopping together before – it makes sense to carpool when you live out of town on a limited budget and to be perfectly honest, I’ll go with S. when I don’t need anything just to spend time with him. I love sitting in the passenger seat without a care in the world, knowing that the man I love is sitting so close to me.

We are quite different shoppers. He’s a ‘get in and get what you need and get out as fast as you can’ kind of guy, and not only because he’s so efficient in his daily life. He hates shopping, even for groceries. I don’t mind shopping. I don’t like buying so much, but I like to take my time, meandering from aisle to aisle and perusing the merchandise laid out on the shelves. Even when I’m focused and in a hurry I only go at his most relaxed pace. So far we’ve laughed about it – even if it’s sometimes only to dispel tension – avoiding any real squabbles. He bugs me that I’m going to get hit by the cart as I gaze star-struck at the shelves around me, I tease him about his scurvy-inducing phobia of the produce section.

We are also quite different when it comes to how we deal with our groceries. We were sharing a cart and as I wandered along he came up and casually put his ground beef in the cart. On top of some grapes.

“You can’t do that!” I almost shrieked.

He picked up his meat very quickly, startled. “Why not?”

“The meat juices could leak out…that’s how you get E-Coli. You can die,” I said. It seems I’ve heard that somewhere although upon reflection I don’t know if it’s true.

“It won’t leak,” he said, scoffing. “It’s sealed.” But nevertheless he put his meat on the very bottom of the cart.

I leaned towards him, instantly embarrassed for freaking out. “I’m sorry,” I said.

“It’s okay,” he said, returning my kiss.

When we got to the teller, he started handing me things to put on the check-out counter. “Could you hand me the heavier stuff first?” I asked.

At his quizzical expression I explained, “It makes it easier for the person bagging the groceries if they’re in order of weight.”

“You do realize that they don’t pack them in your special order,” he said.

“Yes, but it makes it less likely that the bread will end up under the cans,” I said. I thought everyone knew this, but apparently not.

As we drove out of the valley, he shook his head.

“What?” I asked.

“You are really particular when it comes to food,” he said. “Sometimes I feel like I’m irritating you by not following your system.”

I thought for a moment. “I just forget that there’s more than one way to do things,” I said. I still felt bad for freaking out about the meat. “It surprises me and sometimes that probably sounds like I’m irritated, but I’m not. I’m not irritated with you.” I looked out at the hazy blue horizon. “I’ll try to remember that there’s more than one way to do things.”

“It’s okay,” he said.

I looked over at him, the familiar lines of his face and his blue eyes revealing themselves to me as if I’d never seen him before. “I really appreciate how you just take me in stride,” I said.

He glanced at me with a little smile in his eyes before looking back at the road. “You have to take me in stride too,” he said.

“I guess.” I was silent as I thought. “You just accept my idiosyncrasies. I appreciate it.”

He shrugged. “Why not? They’re not going to change.”

And just like that I discovered another level of love to fall into.

He accepts me right now, how I am now, and doesn’t need me to change for him to love me.

It surprised me. It still does – I guess I didn’t think I’d find someone who would, or could, accept me like that.

I had that goofy Bridget Jones smile on my face the rest of the way home. When he asked me why I had no answer except “I’m happy”. I finally understood the magic of those words – “He loves me just the way I am”. There is no phrase as perfect in the English language.

Or as priceless.

Evaluated (June 10, 2007)

Although I wrote this one several weeks ago, it's still extremely relevant to me and I don't know why. I had a meeting about my evaluations and those same feelings all came up again. Just what exactly is this voice trying to tell me? I'd like to know now, please...

I got my evaluations yesterday.

They were all good, as in the criticisms were constructive.

My teachers picked up on new things that I need to learn, which means they’ve either given up on my old bad habits or I’ve outgrown them.

My playwriting teacher had the longest, and most thought-provoking, evaluation.

I’m still processing, but so far I’ve already learned one thing.

I think I’m explaining.

Everyone else hears excuses.

I’m confused but I guess I’ll stop explaining things when they go wrong and just…

…accept the consequences.

Which for some reason I am reluctant to do.

Recalcitrant. Resistant. Rebellious.

I don’t understand but I think it’s true.

I don’t like it.

Rebel – renounce, or take up arms against, authority; revolt. L. re-again, bellum-war.
Recalcitrant – show resistance; refractory. L. re-back, calcitro-kick.
Refractory – unruly, obstinate. Unmanageable, perverse.
Reluctant – unwilling, disinclined. L. re-against, luctor-struggle.
Resistant – make opposition to, strive against. L. re-against, sisto-stand.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Observer (written June 2nd, 2007)

I accidentally posted the unfinished version of this post but since I deleted that, here's the (more) finished product...

All my life, I have been an observer. It is my nature to sit on the sidelines and watch the lives and actions of the people around me. My watching used to be a substitute for living my own life, but as I am now living my life (and pretty fully, I think) I have found that I still watch those around me. These people are my teachers…my friends and family, my neighbours and peers, mentors and heroes. Some I know intimately, some are complete strangers to me.

Last night we opened a show. Weeks of rehearsal finally came to a conclusion and afterwards everyone, cast, crew and audience, gathered outside to celebrate. I found myself, like usual, on the edges watching the main group happily chatting and interacting with each other. I am quite happy to be on the edge watching – it’s less overwhelming for me – but sometimes I wonder if I’m missing out on something. Every party, every social gathering, I skirt the main event and watch the other people. I watch the event instead of being a part of the event.

I’ve tried to be in the centre. I just can’t manage it. The mere thought fills me with a panic, a sense of being overwhelmed and overpowered, of losing my self, and what if I never find me again? It’s taking me long enough as it is. It sounds unreasonable, but being that surrounded by noise and breath and other heartbeats scares me.

I know I’m not alone. At one party several years ago, I met another person on the sidelines who nodded in understanding when I confided my fear of the centre. A whirlwind trip in and then back to the calm – that was how he navigated the chaos too.

I’m not afraid of the people, I try to explain. I just don’t understand the appeal of surrounding myself with them. I don’t want to. It’s uncomfortable to me. I sometimes wonder what it’s like to be at home in the middle of the craziness. I see friends laughing, alive in the element that spells death to me, and I wonder what it would be like to be there and not drowning in the noise.

But I don’t wonder enough to fight my nature and be one of the observed.

In the worlds of both science and mystery they say that the mere act of observing has a tangible effect on the observed. Watching something or someone, even if they don’t know it, has measurable consequences.

So I’ll play my part and watch.

And who knows? Maybe someday I’ll see the results of my observation.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Inheritance (written the week of May 21st, 2007)

Another of the posts I wrote during my absence...

I sat down to write some lame explanation for why I haven’t written here for a while. It’s not even that I haven’t been writing because I have been. I just haven’t been posting what I’ve written. Getting to the office (where the internet is) while it’s open was challenging (well, damn near impossible) because I was in full-time rehearsals for four weeks. I enjoyed myself. After a hiatus from acting, the passion burned brightly again. I learned so much, and I have so much more to learn – but instead of being overwhelming that thought simply makes me smile with anticipation.

But back to the lame explanation. As I sat down to write it I saw my new desktop. I like using photos for my desktop. My last two desktops were headshots of myself, which prompted my mother to say that only an actor could be egotistical enough to have their own face on their computer desktop. I am one of the few women who thinks she is beautiful, and both of those photos showed that wonderfully – they were beautiful pictures of a beautiful woman. However, when I decided to change my desktop yesterday my mother’s words whispered in my head. It helped that I was bored with my own image, so I turned away from the headshots and instead chose one of myself and my brothers, taken by one of my parents last Christmas. It is also a beautiful photo. My two much taller brothers are holding me so that it appears that we are all the same height, although in reality I am sitting on a cradle made out of their hands.

Anyone looking at the photo would see two young men and a young woman, all with the same blue eyes and soft pink gentle lips, all with the same definition to their cheekbones and jaw-lines. The two men have the same nose, the girl’s nose is similar but feminine, with one nostril slightly collapsed on itself. Their hair is different – a red-head and two brunettes, one in mid-tones and one dark, but even in that darkness the German ancestors leave their fair mark.

You don’t see how their personalities mesh and differentiate, as all sibling personalities do. You can’t see how they all have a creative bent. You can’t see how they all have completely different ways of showing that. Things like that aren’t really visible, but that’s okay. That’s why people get to know each other, after all.

Looking at this picture was the first time I saw that I do share facial features with my brothers. We’ve been told all our lives that we look like my father’s people. That is a definite fact – at the last family gathering I went to I saw our lips and bone structures on every side – although our faces hold evidence from my mother’s input too. I’ve never really seen a similarity between my brothers and myself until I chose that photo for my desktop.

It somehow roots me to see that my brothers and I look like our family. It reminds me that there is life outside of learning lines and blocking and finding the lights.

Which is a good thing to be reminded of, I think.