Gathering No Moss

I’m trying hard not to let winter’s sudden arrival bum me out or keep me down. I’m fighting back against it this year.

I had a friend over for dinner last night, something I wouldn’t have been able to do even six months ago. It was lovely and simple, just a couple of buddies sharing a pizza and trading stories. These things are so important to my well being, and to my sometimes tenuous grasp on sanity. Tonight, I get to do three things I love in a single evening – see friends I know and love, read acting scenes in front of a friendly crowd, and have my work performed by others. There’s no wrong, there’s no right, there’s just doing your best, living life, making experiences and enjoying it. Negative-five wind chill be damned. Though I may have to change my shoes, as these combat boots were just a little too slippery on the ice and snow this morning. Tomorrow night, I’m reading my OWN writing aloud in front of what’s shaping up to be a group of a LOT of people. This makes me very, very nervous as I’m still not particularly comfortable reading my own words in front of people, but the only way I’ll get more comfortable with it is if I keep doing it.

When I’m on stage as an actor, I just sort of let the role take me over. Even if I’m just reading a scene at an open mic thing where new work is workshopped, I don’t really feel self-conscious once I get going. It’s a part and I’m just there to do my best with it. But when it’s MY words and isn’t a “scene” or play, all I can think of is how I might trip walking up to the mic and fall face first into it, the thing banging down to the ground and exploding people’s eardrums with electronic feedback. Or how dry my throat gets, or how big my stomach looks, or wondering if someone is looking at my saddlebags and thinking I shouldn’t be wearing leggings. Or at my old face, thinking I shouldn’t have hair this long anymore. I can’t really disappear, I can’t even read the words all that well and my voice trembles. Thankfully, since I trained as an actor, I can try to draw upon some of the little tricks and tips we all have in our repertoire, to try to slow down and not appear so much like a flighty moron, even if I still feel like one inside. We’ll see how I do with that tomorrow night.

Thursday I’m going out with a couple of girlfriends for happy hour, which should also be fun. They are both much younger, skinnier and much prettier than I am, but they find me very funny and like to hear the stories about my crazy life, so it all balances out.

Friday I have to do more legal paperwork, since all of the work I did in December was not saved when my computer suddenly decided to restart after an update. So there’s 15 hours’ worth of work I’ll never get back. Not in the temp file, I already looked. Must start over. I will get it done. I am motivated. I do not intend to return to my “old” name, as that person is no longer me, and is definitely not someone who would get hired if a potential employer were googling around, but am looking forward to more fully defining the new me, which is still in process. And who will be in my life, and in what fashion. I’ve unfriended and friended more people on FB in the past month than I have in the past two years. You’re either with me, or you’re against me, and I don’t have time for exasperated justifications and friends who “support” me by telling me what they think is wrong with me. I’m aware of my faults and foibles, my challenges and baggage, and right now at this point of turmoil and change, what I need is friends. Pizza. Bourbon. Or wine. Hugs and kisses. The touch of a hand. An arm around my shoulder. Understanding and acceptance.

I’m rolling, and the wheels are clattering on the track. Wonder what station I will pull into next.


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