You don’t know who you’re fucking with

Yesterday felt like Friday to me. Mentioned it to  my bro, who said he felt like it was Wednesday. Figured we balanced out to a Thursday between us.

Woke last night to a sharp pain in my left leg near my hip. Was sleeping on my side and something must be cutting or putting pressure on a nerve: hurt like hell, and my leg felt half-numb. Changed position. Eventually it left, but it took a long time. Do not like that. Long overdue for some walking during the day and I feel that was my alarm going off: move, or hurt. NOW.

Been wishing there’s a PPA group (Paranoid People Anonymous). Don’t know if I’m being paranoid or reacting sanely these days. The theatre’s WhatsApp group, once so vocal it made my phone go off a dozen times every day, is silent and remains silent. Hm. Has another group been started, one that doesn’t include me so everyone can safely bitch without me knowing? Yeah, I know: that’s a paranoid thought. Not very probable. But not totally improbable, either. I’ve watched the director whip together new WhatsApp conversations on a whim, including or excluding as he feels necessary.

Nothing, still, for December. No schedule, no request for me to fill in a calendar with my free times. Nothing.

I never liked this group’s lackadaisical approach to things. The last minute ‘can you do this instead?’ questions and the actors needing scripts right up to performance night because they’re not memorizing their lines. But DAMN! I can’t tell if I’m extra hyper about all this and therefore just extra sensitive, or if I’m right on the mark. It feels like I’m right on the mark, but then, that’s the way it always feels. I mean… I’m not too far off, right? It’s 30 November and I’m talking about December here. I should be concerned, shouldn’t I?

Letting go is… Well, I’m finding ‘letting go’ means letting go of everything right now. Relinquishing all control over the blog. Spit out the newsletter whenever. Can all my plans for video. Trying to shed all those other jobs and just be an actor. Think about my role, concentrate on learning my lines. I’ll get a picture or two here or there. I’ll be able to blog once in a while about the group; I don’t have to post after every rehearsal. Yeah, it’s better to post after every rehearsal. To get this shit down to a science. But I feel like I’m dragging everyone through it, like everyone is reluctant to even give me their answers to 8 simple questions for the newsletter. It feels like they resent me doing these things. And I’m tired of working so hard and feeling unwanted and dissed.

Spent lots of time thinking about how I want to handle this and what I’ll do. I need to find that non-caring zone: the one where I let go of my expectations for the play and just participate. That’s the only place I can speak from and not cause trouble. Have decided to simply confront G and M on their attitudes. When I hear from G about how stupid my use of ‘creepy’ is (and I WILL hear about it again, I’m sure) this is my response: You were told you could change that to something you feel more comfortable with. It’s not really an issue anymore, so why do you keep bringing it up? The only reason I can think of is that you want to make me feel bad about my work. Is there something you need to say to me? Similar with M: I thought you enjoyed this script when we began. Now you seem to hate it. What’s going on? M doesn’t get as much thought because I skipped her rehearsal. I got an evening full of attitude from G, tho. She deserves to be called to the carpet.

No more dissing me. I’ll take joking around; I like to do that, too. And generally I feel like I have a large capacity to make fun of myself. But no more telling me my words are stupid, or something doesn’t make sense. You’re not even giving me the minimum respect any human deserves when you roll your eyes at me time and time again; THAT I will not put up with.

Thinking about being scary Beeps. Scary Beeps is very effective; I’ve used her in the past. It usually only takes one well placed threat to make people back off. I may be short, but I have an intensity about me that people respond to. Maybe it’s my bipolar effect. Or maybe it’s because I issue the threat the way I act: I feel it, every part of it. When I lean in close and with a small smile say, ‘You don’t know who you’re fucking with,’ people get frightened. Perhaps that thin line that’s preventing me from punching them finally gets their notice. Gee, she’s really angry! Yep. And most people have never confronted the type of rage I carry. Yesterday I indulged in a bit of ‘crazy talk’. But here’s a story for you: someone once pissed me off. Mightily. I cursed him without thinking. This was before I recognized the effect I have on my surroundings. Two weeks later I got a call telling me he’d committed suicide. I’ve no proof the two things are connected. Then again, I’ve no proof they’re not. But experience tips it to the connected side. There’s also the story of getting mugged in Chicago one night (I ended up in hospital with a head injury). I cursed that person, too, loudly and quickly. The next morning I received a phone call from a man in Chicago. One of his employees had found my purse with everything in it behind a bush in a park. They returned it to me, in tact. Nothing gone, nothing stolen, and no explanation for what happened. Other than my suspicions.

I feel like I can ‘get even’ with D, G, M, or anyone else. Not directly. Most of the time I won’t even hear about what happens; that’s the way it works. But it does seem to work.

You don’t know who you’re fucking with.

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Take that

Due to, let’s call it creative differences, it was decided (and she completely agreed) that D no longer continues with the play.

If I was grading that I’d give it a 55. You got the message across but your language -! Here’s what I read (between the lines): D and Beeps couldn’t get along, so D left of her own accord. I’ll say it’s creative differences but write it in a manner so no one is confused about the fact that it’s not really creative differences but Beeps. Is everyone clear?

The above was sent from the director.

Last night was Act 1 and I felt a bit better. Still down. Begged off with a ‘I’m a bit tired today’ excuse to cover my depression. I caught no flack for what happened, tho. No attitude from anyone. Let’s just work. Even had some giggle fits. I’m getting those more and more often during rehearsals, and I know it’s the pressure that’s doing it.

Found that yes, I’ve made a solid decision. Tonight is the test. One word about me or my ‘controlling ways’ and I walk out the door. No fighting, no talking, just a ‘Well, I’m obviously the problem here, so I’ll leave. If you find someone to take my part, grab ’em. I’ll step down.’

And you know, the only thing I really wanted was to see my story done just once my way before I die. That’s all. Just once to see it like I saw it in my head. But those fucking bitches can’t even do that; all they think about is themselves and their fucking egos.

Further: after the director shared the above message, L chimed in. She and D were ‘talking’ on WhatsApp. Apparently D thought ‘it was a real shame’ that she ‘had to leave the play’. She hopes to audition in future and participate.

I won’t have anything to do with THAT production. Nope. Someone else take rehearsal pix. Someone else blog. Or it don’t get done, because I won’t stand foot on stage with that CUNT for one fucking minute. Yeah, I used that word. CUNT. Look it up in the dictionary and you’ll find her picture. I will not work with her. Ever. Not in ANY way.

She made me into an enemy. Can I state here that I’m the only American in this group? I’m surrounded by Dutch nationals, who seem to be natural mediators, and other European people who are far more likely to try and talk things out. I guess when push comes to shove, my core is still American. I’m ready to fight, to punch, to kick, to go to battle. Not to talk. I don’t want to talk; I want to punish D. This… quick to violence reaction is very American. I’ve watched society while I’ve lived here. Talked in depth to people who probably thought I was mad to bring up such subjects. They don’t fight easily. They don’t want to fight.

So, still down. Ready to walk out of my own play. Ready to shut down totally, and not say another peep to anyone in the cast. The very idea of that makes me even sadder. But I’ve got to make taking care of myself my priority. Dr T would not be on board with me continuing this if it’s so damned difficult for me and it keeps triggering my anger.

Oh, yeah! Almost forgot the best part. L received a note yesterday about our venue. We don’t have the dates we thought we did. They don’t do Friday nights. They can give us Saturday and Sunday, that’s it. We’re not happy. No one comes to Sunday performances. Might as well not do it. And now what? Try and find another venue for Friday? Deal with 2 different venues, 2 different sound boards, 2 different everything 2 days in a row?? We can’t go earlier because we need the rehearsal time, and we can’t go later because that’s the zone M’s wife is due to give birth. We’re short one actor, nothing has been decided on Michael, Eve’s boyfriend who has a phone call in Act 1. I wrote it originally with an actor, then it went to recorded responses, and now the director is thinking of using a live actor on stage. But we have no one, so nothing is decided yet. Since I don’t know about venues, I can’t say for sure that I’ll be doing video. We may not be able to use it. Or, I’ll have to do double duty, video and pure audio, to cover all circumstances.

And our December agenda to create a rehearsal calendar STILL isn’t out yet…

Have to get on the newsletter, too.

This weekend I’m doubling down on sound. Ramming that stuff through no matter what the cost to me. Getting real sick of all this; the director isn’t using my roughs, a subtle (or not so subtle) sign that he thinks they’re shit. The other actors are getting bitchy, and inserting toilet flushes or other inappropriate sounds at times with their phones. I feel like the entire production is tipping on the scales from horror/drama to farce/comedy. It doesn’t take much to push it from one to the other, and it’s getting pushed.

Consolation to myself: I don’t have to lay claim to this play at all. I’m using my pseudonym, and I hardly expect at this point for anyone to single me out during the applause. If it ends up a piece of shit I won’t invite anyone. That’s MY call. Fuck all of you.

No more scripts from me. I may pull back from the group in the next year or two. I hope to work on this with the film crew, or get it out to another troupe who might actually be able to do what I wrote. I want to flesh these ideas into a good narrative, and work on my ‘new’ outline for a comedy.

If they all think I’m too controlling, I’ll step back.

Take that.

I’m not taking that

Just back from rehearsal. Not happy. All the joy has gone out of it for me; G obviously got an earful from D and I felt under attack.

The director was out, getting some coffee, when M suggested we begin reading thru the first scene. G read woodenly, as if she’d never said the lines before. No inflection, no life. She ‘worked’ to read some lines, like they made zero sense and were the stupidest thing ever written.

Then the director returned, and G suddenly became Chrissa. Bubbly, emotive, all of it.

However.

G sat on her phone, communicating with someone during the entire evening. She went on and on about her roles in Shakespearean productions – like that was supposed to impress me. She complained loudly about certain lines of dialogue, claiming they made no sense and were silly because no one would ever say it.

Tomorrow is Act 3, with M, the other FB friend of D.

I’ve already had it up to here with hearing what an awful fucking writer I am. One more comment and I’m ready to say: Gee! I guess I should be really grateful to you guys for ever considering doing such a lousy play by such a hack writer since all you do is complain about the damned dialogue and script! Maybe we just shouldn’t do it. What do you think?

Oh, Clive Barker, give me strength! I know you went thru this, too. How I wish I could talk with you!!

Nothing was said of D. I even tried to bring it up, subtly, with the director. He didn’t take the bait; I heard nothing of what’s been said about me. Okay. That bad, huh? I don’t buy for one minute that she’s not causing problems. I think I witnessed some of it this evening. So that means the director thinks I can’t handle hearing the full monty. Okay. He’s probably right. But it ain’t helping my paranoia. I’d rather hear an edited for Beeps version: Yeah, she said a few things and thought you were too controlling. I reminded her of your jobs and what we’re doing. Don’t let it bother you.

And after tonight… Well. I won’t say they’ll never get another script from me; that will hang off the full experience. So far, tho, they’re not doing well.

Damn. I just feel discouraged. Like I have to battle against a wall of stuff in an already tough position.

I don’t need people to like me. I just need them to do their fucking jobs. Preferably without attitude.

My bro suggested I run to the director with my observations. I’m not ready to do that yet. As long as G brings it when the director’s present, she can be as wooden as she wants other times.

I ain’t being slagged off on my writing again, tho. Line drawn. I have been more than accommodating with changing curse words, moving lines, inserting things, playing with the dialogue in various forms. I’m not hearing how my story doesn’t make sense any more. I’ll pull it out from under them.

Once again, I find the job of cheerleader doesn’t come with my own cheerleading section. I need some positivity, too, guys! You think it’s easy trying to juggle all your dialogue changes, the sound, the newsletter, the hype? Get up off your asses and help! I’ve been asking since day one. But, no. You just want to sit there and bitch at me and all my work, don’t you?

I’ll take your jokes about me being short. I’ll take the slags on Americans; I don’t like them much, either. I’ll take all of that, but do not – DO NOT! – slag off what I know to be one of the best things I’ve ever written.

I’m not taking that.

I still don’t know

I heaved a sigh of relief when my computer connected with WP. A sigh of relief! ‘I’m getting sick of hearing about shit that those people should hear, that’s all.’ Mild statement from my brother. Yeah, I’m trippin’ out.

Struggling with doubt. Maybe I’ve been inactive too long and my endorphin rushes have all been used up. Maybe replaying the negative statements I’ve heard has just taken its toll. Don’t know. All I do know is that I’m full of doubts. Doubt that the theatre group will do my script, doubt that the production will go ahead, doubt that they’ll ever understand my reasoning behind the story. What began as a chink in my armor has led to a full-out attack in my head.

Told my bro, once again, that I must at times verbalize my frustration in order to get it out of me. Even apologized that he’s the one who has to hear it. He acknowledged the apology, but he’s still unhappy.

Does not help my feeling of isolation.

Still…T took the time to reassure me of the sound and the work load ahead. He’ll be there, helping. I won’t have to do it all alone.

He’s off now, down to the library to print some things up and stop by MediaMarkt to pick up Seasons 2 and 3 of The Magicians, a series we’ve both gotten into. The tv is off, the internet connection is working, and I can (hopefully) get this out of me before he returns.

Received one rather cryptic message from the director. He acknowledged the motivational analyses I did, and said he’s ‘sending rehearsals tonight’ – though I didn’t receive a link to a calendar. Must have meant on their phone app they all share (but me, naturally). One more thing that keeps me out of the loop.

*sigh* So, no idea. Still don’t have my hands on the camera I’m gonna use. Still don’t know when rehearsals are. Still don’t have answers on the scant half-dozen queries I sent out. Just sitting here, spinning my wheels and re-hearing ad infinitum in my brain the negativity I feel I’ve received.

NL is still in a warm spell, so I’m staying off wound creation. Wanted to do it today, but last time I used the hair dryer on a warm day I blew out the fuses to half the flat. So…wait for cooler weather, just to be safe. Took a shower to wash off the dust and grime; spent a few hours yesterday cleaning the house (and made SURE my bro knew about all the work I put in). Have to put in 30 minutes on Dutch homework today. Other than that, I’m twiddling my thumbs…

Interesting perspective my bro brought to my attention yesterday. I was griping, naturally, about the theatre group. He said that they may be very intimidated by my approach, and mentioned the possibility that they really want to keep this group low key. Have to admit he’s got a point; they certainly haven’t stretched themselves trying to advertise their stuff. I’ve been going on the idea that they just can’t put what they know into practice. Maybe I’m wrong. Made the executive decision that I just won’t overload them. Ideas about hidden codes, press coverage, reviewers – I should keep all that under my hat and not tell them. Do what I do, bring in the audience I know I can, but keep silent.

Gods, this is tough stuff! More than ever I’m aware of my verbalization during these manic periods. The continual line of thought I spew out. I need that, on some level, to organize. But I see how it’s intimidating and tiring, and others don’t really want it from me. Really need to talk to Dr T about this! I’ve done my best, turning this unending flow into writing, but obviously I’m still verbalizing the spew. I’m hearing the backlash. And seeing it. Feeling it. …Shit.

Deep breath.

My head has begun working on the book version of the script. Or, should I say, books. In the plural. Because each act is gonna get its own. That’s the plan, anyway. Learn from the production, keep fleshing things out, write from there. Starting to get a handle on the teenager who commits suicide and the side characters not really in the play. …By the time I get around to writing the book version, it’s gonna be more an ordering of my notes than creation.

… … Ugh. I just want the people in the play to be happy. To look forward to some fun. For the most part, that’s what’s happening. I shouldn’t let one or two comments bug me so much. Experience has taught me how one or two comments can spiral out of control, though, so I’m cautious. I’d like to address people’s concerns and feel like we reach an understanding. That may not be possible with everyone, and I’ve got to accept that. I’ve got to step back and let the director handle it. If I feel too under attack and that I’m continually looked to for answers, I’ll mention it to him. I feel I’m being clear, and restating the same thing ad infinitum. If I’m saying it in a manner that’s not being understood, someone else (ie, the director) has to step in and handle it. I don’t know how to rephrase myself or say it any differently.

And a reminder to myself that I’m walking a thin line here. Remember: be careful what you write. The deeper I delve into this semi-conscious thing I’m writing about, the more likely it is that I see the effects of it in my own life. It’s a double edged sword: it’s both what makes a good story, and what drives some writers to a paranoid edge. Have I already experienced that odd glitch or shift I sometimes see in groups of people around me? Yes. I’ve never known if this was me, or something else. I still don’t know.

I still don’t know.

When will I learn?

My brother began shoving decongestants down my throat yesterday. I’m sick from these allergies, and I think you are, too. Sure enough. Stuff began to drain out of my head. I was so knocked out I spent most of the afternoon sleeping in front of the tv. Snot, coughing, drainage…it’s a fun ol’ time in the household lately.

But DAMN! I shut myself down too fast. I’m not listening to my body. He knew I was sick before I did?!? Holy Hell, I’m off track with myself.

As usual, I’m just out of it. Never really been able to concentrate while I’m ill. When I finally admit to being sick I’m so sick all I can really do is sleep, eat, and drink juice. The grand trifecta of health.

Woke up to see the winner of Eurovision plastered all over the news. Didn’t watch last night; see above for my reason. Gods, they’re letting themselves into the shit next year, aren’t they? Have to say, I can’t support it. Especially after the comment from the winner. Might actually write to the head of the NL Eurovision board and ask them not to go. I don’t believe Israel’s rhetoric any more than I believe the rhetoric from the states. And I don’t trust that it won’t turn into a horrible situation, either with severe political backlash or some sort of attack to prove a point. Nope. Wouldn’t touch that with a twenty foot pole.

Been trying to get my way thru my homework. Lucky for me, the homework isn’t that tough. Back to simple verb conjugation. It’s easy to move on, try to learn other stuff, but it’s important we keep working what we already should know. Been a few months since we’ve had this type of homework. And all the advanced grammar rules are mixing with the basics in my head now: is it a T on the end of that word, or a D? Does it get a “ge-” prefix, or is it one of those pesky irregular verbs? Good to go back and re-work this stuff. If I get 100% on it I’ll feel like I can really move on. It’s in my brain, cemented, correct. If not…well…my teachers have hundreds of more exercises like this one.

Might ditch Beedle the Bard and move onto another book. It’s a step up in reading level, and I’m down to “So and so did something to this thing, and then that happened”. Getting the gist, but not all. Some sentences are just too far beyond me. I don’t recognize one bleeding word in those damn things. Others are simpler. And, nod to myself, I caught another name change and this time got the joke of it. But I’ll need to hang onto this book, and try it again later. It goes on the ‘work on this’ pile.

Here it is mid-May and still no word on the theatre production. I feel like I can’t prod the director again. Thought he was clear in stating ‘after the holidays’, but then I realized May is littered with Dutch holidays, so it might actually end up being the end of the month. I just hope once we get working everyone shows a bit of enthusiasm for the story. I’m beginning to feel like they think my work isn’t worth putting time into, that they feel it’s ‘just her story’ so they can slap it together haphazardly and it won’t matter. Telling myself that’s just my paranoia and bad experiences; it’s not happening this time. Also reminding myself that I held a room full of Dutch people spellbound just by reading one of my stories aloud; anything up on that will be just fine. It’s a strong idea. Even if it gets flipped by performances into the black comedy range, my core message still comes across.

Gonna try to get a shower in today. Nap, because I’m already feeling tired again. See if I can worm my way thru the rest of my homework, even if I do make mistakes. Just get something in on every blank spot. …Gods, I’m so bleeding tired.

Guess it’s a good thing it’s Sunday. A day you can sleep away and never feel too guilty over; it’s Sunday, for pete’s sake! Nothing’s really open and the focus is all on tomorrow. It’s a no-day. A day you catch up on whatever you didn’t finish during the week.

The only thing I feel up to ‘catching up on’ is my health. I’ve allowed my focus to shift off taking care of myself, and I fell ill.

There’s only one thing that matters in all of this: me. Take care of me, and the rest will fall into place. Take care of me, and I can see it through.

*sigh* One step forward, two steps back. When will I learn?

Can’t see the forest

And so…

Did some pacing, and some self-talk therapy. Needed to walk out those feelings that were overwhelming me. Got to the gym, burned hard and didn’t tear up once. Back home to hit my homework. Meh. Will I ever learn this language well enough that I don’t have to look up umpteen frigging words in my dictionary every time I do homework? Begrudgingly, I’ll admit my comprehension in general is higher. But there are words I’ve done before in homework, and I just can’t retain their meaning. Don’t know why, but every damned time I think ‘Oh, shit! That word! I know it. What the fuck does it mean again?’ It’s slow going.

Have replayed Friday in my mind so often I’m growing a bit paranoid. Did I go overboard? Ye gods! STOP IT! Stop thinking about it, analyzing it from every little angle. It was fine; you were fine! Stop…looking for something to throw you. Hate it when I do that. And I do it more often than I want to admit.

Now it’s back to practicalities. Get prepped for the premiere. Try on my one good dress (almost vintage now, at 28 years old) and see if it still fits. Shoes are a priority: I only have sneakers and ankle boots. Clean the jewelry I think I’m gonna wear. Think about what the hell I can do with my hair. Wear it up? I’m tempted. There’s so much of it, tho. Will I have the time and funds to get it done? Nice thought, but doubtful. My brother has already been generous with extra money for shoes and a dress if needed; this month is financially tight, as every month seems to be. I can’t ask for more, nor do I feel right splashing out a lot on myself. I’ll try to make do.

I look forward to a day when getting my hair done isn’t viewed as ‘splashing out on myself’.

Smoking: been uppermost in my mind. I am hyper conscious of every time I smoke. Beginning to put it off. Wait a bit longer each time. No great strides, but a bit of progress. A little bit less than the day before. I’ll take it.

…Have to admit to something difficult now. I’m disappointed, and I shouldn’t be. Or, that’s what I’m feeling. …*sigh*… Right. I’ve already acknowledged that even tho I’ve broken off contact with many members of my family, I still want their praise. That’s a common theme in my life. So it shouldn’t be so hard for me to say I’m disappointed that not one member of my DNA family whom I have so many frigging problems with said ANYTHING about the film trailer I posted on FB. Even the ones I still have contact with – no likes, no thumbs up, nothing. Nadda, with a silent exclamation point because it’s that damned quiet. It is difficult, tho. I feel like it’s not appropriate. I made the choice, I cut them off – what the hell am I bitching about now? But if I’m not honest about my conflicting emotions and nonsensical desires, well, what the hell am I writing this for? …Right? (Asked with a desperate need for confirmation..)

Shit, Beeps. You’re looking in the wrong direction…

Remember? Don’t look back. Your elders will never give you what you want. Look forward. Look to the children. It’s they who are excited over you and your knowledge. They’re the ones to call you a role model. You can never be that to your elders. Never, ever, ever. Let it go. And take what you’re given, because what you’re given is precious and wonderful. S looks at me and wonders why I give myself such a hard time. You’re so beautiful, and talented, and brilliant! she tells me. Everything I wanted my mother to say to me. Everything she never said. Take it, Beeps. Without reservation, without self degradation. Hold your head up, smile, and take it as it’s meant. This is your payoff, finally. Allow yourself to enjoy it.

I give myself permission to be happy. I give myself permission to be happy…

People say ‘give it time’. Whatever the hurt or problem, ‘give it time’ is the answer. What people really mean is ‘have more patience with yourself’. And that is far harder than giving it time. Time you can while away through many shiny distractions. But patience for yourself! Now, that’s something you’ve got to work on. Consciously. It is a moment by moment thing, and it’s tough. Doesn’t help that while you learn your new conditions or language or habits, time drags. Tick, tick, tick…Your days become filled with the ticking of the clock, counting off every begrudged minute devoted to whatever it is you’re trying to heal from or learn or change. Once you’ve got it, that stops happening. Time goes back to normal. Sometimes, it even speeds up. But until then…it’s just a slog.

Why do the good and fun things in life seem to fly by so quickly, while the horrid things we’d rather not put up with go on and on and on?

If that holds true, this week should last a few months. I’ve got my language lesson (not ready for it, but then I don’t know that I ever will be), shopping for shoes (ugh. don’t even go there.), and a dental appointment for a mouth guard fitting (dread; more crap in my mouth). Must call about my orthopedics – that’s a double whammy: Dutch on the phone combined with shoes angst. Find out if I’m too fat for my good dress or not (MEGA dread).

Hm. Well that list gets me back to my normal anxiety/stress level. *ironic chuckle*

I walked into this year thinking it was all gonna pop for me. Everything just go, go, go. Now, I don’t know. Now I’m in the daily muck of it all, and I’m getting lost in the small shit.

I can’t see the forest for the trees.

Stop!

Down time for RA. One of the worst things ever was growing up not having this disease diagnosed. I experienced a lot of pain, and was told I was being over dramatic. Truth was, my bones were minutely fracturing and my inflammation at a level that should have put me in hospital. But I didn’t know. I listened to the hateful people in my life who blamed me. I told myself I was weak and stupid. So I’ve still got a real problem with taking time off for pain I didn’t actually cause. This time, it’s in a foot, and bad enough I’ve been limping. Lovely.

In ultra paranoid mode. It’s the last week before the play, and the most dangerous time period for me. I’ll be working every night, up late, with people (who all seem to have sick kids or sick spouses or a nasty cough themselves). That’s a recipe for disaster. Washing my hands dozens of times every day. Pushing juice. Picking meals for health value rather than taste.

Heard from the publisher I was pursuing for my brother’s book. Sadly, they passed. Can’t shake this feeling someone on their side fucked up; we were passed off to another person, and he seemed to discount it out of hand with a ‘we already have enough music theory books’ statement. Which seems odd to me, because they DON’T have a book like this. Theory books are written from piano keyboard standpoints. This one works from guitar and bass fretboards, too. But, okay. I’ll move on. Have pages and pages of publishers to check out.

Have not yet addressed the issue with my uncle. Waiting until after the play. I don’t need the distraction. Must admit to feeling half and half – half anger, half pity. I’m still angry he thinks he has the right to rile me up on my own page. But I pity him, too. Took a look at his FB page, and can I say, it’s little wonder he comes to MY page to get some attention. Nonetheless, it’s got to stop. Lucky for him, that top fresh edge of my rage has worn away. I’ll be gentler now.

…Got to admit to a growing sense of…disappointment, I guess. I feel flat and let down. Almost depressed. Not sure why. If anything, I should be feeling up and excited this last week of rehearsals. Maybe I’m just tired, and the RA flare up doesn’t help. Maybe I’ve been working myself too hard, or worrying too much. I look forward to performing again, and yet…yet I don’t.

Coming to some hard realizations, too. Deeper levels of understanding. I’m beginning to really understand my 20-something self, why I did what I did. Started calling my mother by her first name in conversation and in my head. Found it helps me disconnect a bit from that ‘but she’s my mother; I’m supposed to love her’ shit. C was a bitch, and should have NEVER had children. Full stop. Found an article about daughters of unloving mothers. Had that ‘oh my god, they’re talking about me’ thing happen with a couple of items they noted, particularly a bit about children not knowing if the good mommy or the bad mommy was present. That hit home. Hard. I’ve also been admitting to myself how often I sabotaged my success, or turned away from opportunities because I just didn’t feel worthy. I take responsibility for these actions. But I lay the blame on C. She boxed my mind in, she made me feel helpless and worthless. I hate her for it.

Unfortunately, there ain’t no do-overs in life. I can’t go back and reclaim those lost opportunities. I can’t go back and make myself feel worthwhile. Wish I could. I’d like to see how far I might have actually gone if I was unfettered by self-hate. If I was given just a tiny bit of real support and love.

I am so jealous of people with loving families!

But even if I could go back, I know now the only things that would change would be how quickly fights would escalate and how early I left home never to return or talk to C again. Because she wouldn’t change. The rest of my family doesn’t ever change; why should she? It’s not like she wanted me. She didn’t. And she sure as fuck wouldn’t change her martyrdom for her children. I could only go back and tell them to fuck off. Say the things I should have said. I couldn’t spare myself hurt or pain, because that would still happen. I could just get out of it sooner, stop acting out against C earlier.

It’s difficult to change this aspect of myself. To stop hating myself so much.

Hell! It’s difficult to just stop.

Distractions

In the past 24 hours, I’ve had to turn down an invite to see a local band and nix my language lesson – all in the name of health. Does not help that I feel manic and am having a difficult time settling. I’m probably erring on the side of caution, but after six weeks ill this spring plus losing my hearing, I don’t really think of that as a minus. Still…it’s hard not to feel like a wimp. I’m not ill. Trouble is, I want to stay that way.

Avoiding class today because we were scheduled for a field trip to the local library. Offered a three month free library membership, which I wanted. But it’s cold and wet and windy again. Chances of getting soaked on the walk to and from the library are high, and even higher for being exposed to something. So I’m bundling down. Drinking juice. Staying warm.

My commitment to the theatre group runs through the end of October. Like it or not, I have weeks of vigilance ahead of me.

Vigilance kept me from a full work out yesterday, too. All went well, topped another 3 km on the cross trainer, felt strong. Then I got off the cross trainer, and felt a twinge in my knee. Tried walking it out, both on the floor and at a very slow pace on the treadmill but it kept giving me gip, so I followed the damned instructions on the machine (the one that said STOP if you’re having pain) and headed home. *sigh* It’s not like I wanted to. But again, experience spoke to me: nine months unable to walk after tearing the cartilage in both knees makes for a powerful memory.

Been watching Ally McBeal again. Very dated at this point. Especially post Ugly Betty and Drop Dead Diva. Had to remind my brother it was a ground breaking series when it came out. Ally McBeal was one of the first shows to portray a single, working woman who didn’t close herself off in a male world. She was romantic, soft, and very flawed. Oh, but there are elements that grate at me! I watch it now and pity my younger self and all women of that era. THIS is what we thought was marvelous at the time. I can only hope that the rapidity of strong female role models emerging in the entertainment industry will be mimicked in reality.

Ach. It comes too little, and too late for me.

Not too late for me to capture what I know, though. My particular brand of family issues and insecurities is brewing into something. Will I leave an opus? Goddess, I hope so. I don’t feel I have much to give as a person. I give what I can, trust when I’m able – but I recognize it’s far too little in most instances, and I judge myself meanly.

…Being left alone with only my thoughts brewing isn’t helping.

C’mon, distractions!

There’s already enough

Heavy sigh.

If I were to take as long healing from all the crap I got growing up as it took to brainwash me into thinking I was a piece of shit, I’d be 76 and counting before I got over it. That’s the thought that elicited the heavy sigh, a depressed feeling, and anger over time never fucking being on my side.

I hate my family.

Gods…I know I look awful when I’m at the gym. Catch myself too often too deep into emotion. I tear up, my face turns red – I’m sure I look either like I’m about to have a heart attack or a nervous breakdown. Or both. It’s what happens. My body moves, stuff shifts and suddenly I am overwhelmed by memories and emotions. Therapists really should think about doing sessions during work-outs. At least in my case.

Gotta go through it. Free up whatever got blocked. Breathe. Fucking breathe. That’s the only thing I can think of, when it hits me. My feet move, time ticks on, but I’m unaware of any of it. Just stuck somewhere deep in a half hidden memory that’s full of old, built up muck. I’ve only impressions left over. Impressions of regret, and anger. Why did it go down that way? Why couldn’t I have been one of the lucky ones born into a family that cared?

Don’t talk to me about fate. I’ve always felt like I’m paying forward in this life, and it sucks. I was never a kid who enjoyed frying ants or ripping off the wings of flies. I don’t have that mean streak in me. If I’d been a shit in a previous life, wouldn’t it have shown up early on? I think so. But I was that weird kid who’d get up at 4 am to sing the sun up. I talked to trees, and cried over injustices.

And if the secret to reaching zen is dealing with people shitting on you all the time, I must be some freaking holy zen master.

So why do I find all of this so fucking difficult?

Haven’t I learned anything?

But, hey. I don’t have social niceties. Was never taught them. Don’t get hidden agendas, or most faux pas (what IS the plural on that, anyway?). And if I had a nickel for every time I heard about how ‘different’ I was…well, I still wouldn’t be rich. But I could buy a cheap meal for myself.

So what’s stuck in my craw today?

Other than the welling up of old memories and feelings, I guess I’d have to say it was what happened at my language lesson. Yeesh. You know, questioning any of this makes me wonder if I’m not just some drama queen timing things out and demanding my fair share of attention. Nonetheless, I noticed a definite difference between how I am treated and how my fellow student is treated. The effect was heightened for me because we had another new volunteer teacher sit in with us, to learn how a lesson might be. I think she looked at me twice. The remainder of her eye contact was reserved for my fellow student. And rightly so; the majority of conversation took place between my teacher, the newbie, and the other student. I was not included. I was not asked questions. I searched for things to say, to include myself…didn’t feel it was well received. They turned, they listened, but they didn’t follow up with statements or questions. Am I being paranoid? So difficult to tell. The other student is not as far along as me, and both instructors might have felt she needed more practice speaking. That’s logical. Still. I’ve an undeniable feeling that something else is going on, something I’m not catching onto. I hate that.

Mm. That’s the second thing I’ve said I hate.

Decided something. Had a weird few minutes during the script read through. I was outside with the director and someone the director knew was leaving. The guy asked me – twice – if I was the director’s wife. My reaction: laughter. I’ve thought a lot about that, and realized it might have sounded derisive to the director. Like I was laughing at the idea that we could be married because I found him unattractive or whatever. I wasn’t; I was laughing over the idea of anyone even conceiving ME of being capable of marrying someone. I’m just a bit worried that my hilarity will be taken the wrong way, and I don’t want any misunderstandings over my lack of social skills. So I’m gonna bring it up to him. Remind him of that moment and explain myself because I didn’t at the time. And I don’t need anyone else thinking I’m a shit.

There’s already enough.

Dizzy

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How have you been?

I answer in the physical: my rheumatoid arthritis answer. Not too much pain, but far too much hair loss. I’m back in the gym. At the pool. Getting stronger.

Are you still going to Addiction Central?

Realization floods over me. Oh! She’s asking about my mental state, not my physical state. I shift gears. No, I say, but I mention my advancements: more exercise, writing. I fib over the amount I smoke. The lie doesn’t sit well with me, but I’ve learned a thing or two. While coffeeshops abound and most turn a blind eye to toking a J publicly, the medical personnel here are sharply divided on their opinion of marijuana use. I know which side of the fence my doctor sits on. I want her to leave the question alone. I’m fine; let’s not talk about it. Let’s not talk about the crying times, the times I can’t sleep, the manic writing sprees. Let’s not bring up my questions over my self worth, the state of the world, mortality and morality.

That’s just my normal.

It’s the way my head works when my eyes are open. Want me to get fuzzy, forget about all that? Sure, we can do that, too. I thought that was called avoidance.

Lately, I’ve been dealing. Crying times are short and easily stopped. Sleep isn’t too much a problem. Writing sprees I revel in, and the rest of it…well, if you don’t ponder those things, I pity you. You must live a small life.

My confidence is getting blasted left and right these days. The jelly roll around my middle disgusts me, and the knowledge that I’ve got to carry around an extra fanny pack that isn’t detachable except through a lot of hard work at the gym makes me just feel tired to the bone. Some days I feel pretty good with Dutch, others a complete moron – the yo-yoing of that mindset isn’t helping. And yesterday I received a velvet-footed kick in the stomach in the form of J’s synopsis of my work. It was a huge compliment; one I was not ready for, one I’m not sure I live up to.

I’ve never been good with compliments.

I said none of that to my doctor. Not a whisper, not a hint passed my lips. She spoke slowly in Dutch, and looked in my eyes and ears. She took my blood pressure sitting down, then standing up. She stood behind me, took my head in her hands, and moved my neck around. Prognosis: low blood pressure, take the pills down from two twice a day to one twice a day. I’ve also got a go-ahead for the physiotherapist to being manipulating my neck. Oh, he’s gonna love that. My hips are uber flexible compared to my neck.

Today was the pool, and for once I got my wish: everybody stayed out my way. I swam unimpeded in my lane. My body feels it, too. Dead heavy with tiredness.

A few more hours on the script, adding in my notes and correcting a few typos. I hesitate to open it. Yesterday I ‘opened it just to take a look at my work’. Four hours later, I had to turn the lights on in the room. Talk about falling down the rabbit hole! Yet as it’s wrapping up, and I do feel it wrapping up, I realize once again that it’s all just been one big exercise. Oh, maybe someone somewhere will do it, but it’s not all that. … Is it? No. Getting a workshop would still be optimal: walk it through, see how it looks, how it feels, what’s right, what needs work.

And the director got back to me to tell me he didn’t read it yet. Another excuse why he hasn’t got to it. I’m beginning to think he won’t read it at all. That it will be this, then that, then another thing. It will get put off, promised, delayed, promised again, and eventually, perhaps, I’ll just stop asking about it. Is that small and mean of me to think that? A negative reaction from all the crap I had growing up?

Or is that just seeing things as they are, or as they might be? Is that my intuition telling me something?

Mm. I’m trying to enter a closed system. No matter how much the theatre group claims to be open to new people, they are closed in the sense that they all have a long history with each other that new people are not included in. Was it even appropriate of me to ask the director to read my work? I don’t know. Once in awhile, they burst into Dutch. Sometimes it’s to tell the lighting guys at the venue what they need. Other times, it’s just something they need to say to each other in their native language. But since I’m not fluent, it’s another barrier. I don’t catch it all. I try. I listen. I watch. I pay attention. But I am outside that circle. And for all I know, I’ve committed more than one faux pas socially.

Or maybe I’m just paranoid.

So I must be patient: my own personal Waterloo. Wait. See what happens. Other people have lives….

Paradox. Time moves incredibly slowly with some things. It’s like some ideas get caught in molasses. They drag through time, taking far longer than anticipated. Other things fly through time. In the blink of an eye, there it is. Think fast, and deal with the consequences.

No wonder I’ve been feeling dizzy.