Monday, March 31, 2014

I Don't Like Rollercoasters

When I was a kid we went on a lot of field trips to amusement parks.  Most of the other kids couldn't wait to get on the rollercoaster.  I, however, avoided it like the plague (that researchers are saying was NOT, apparently, spread by rats or their fleas, but by humans.  Figures).
The Tilt-a-Whirl?  Absolutely!  Ferris Wheel?  Bring it ON!  Teacups!  Lets go as fast as is humanly possible (extra points if you vomit at any point).
But I HATED, and still hate, rollercoasters.

I've been on a few in my time.  Have never enjoyed them.  And I think it's because (here it comes! The Metaphor!) I've pretty much been on an EMOTIONAL rollercoaster for as long as I can remember.  (See that?  See what I did there?)
In fact, that should be a ride.  Emotional Rollercoaster. It'd be set up like "It's A Small World" at Disneyland.  Only instead of visiting other cultures, with cute (creepy) little singing animatronic children greeting you at every turn, it would be scenes from your life.  What's around this corner? Oh, hey! It's your parents' dashed hopes for you!  And next, we have the high school crush who asked you to the prom, then reneged at the last minute because s/he and her/his ex, who is WAY hotter than you, got back together!  And here; oh boy, it's your BOSS!

And so on.

What all of this is leading to is a fight Hubby and I had over the weekend.  We rarely fight, so when we do...look out!  We ended up talking through a lot of things, and resolved a whole host of stuff, so it was a productive fight, at least, but it's still left me feeling anxious and depressed.  In ways I haven't felt in a long time.
And worse, it's left me with that feeling of having no control over what happens in my own life. Of being buffeted around by exterior forces.
Which is what made me such a control freak in the first place, all those years ago.  It's been a long, strange, painful trip, prying my fingers off of my life and trying to let things just BE.  Obviously I'm not there yet. I think I still have a pinky and an index finger stuck to it all, like that kid's tongue on the frozen pole in "A Christmas Story."

It hasn't helped that this past month has been pretty whack, as the kids used to say.  (OK, those kids are now in their 30's and working as investment bankers...)  Between my Mom's visit, my father-in-law's going back to the hospital, school meetings and IEPs for the kids, my class, and just now a visit form another family member, it's been a whirlwind, and I've had trouble catching my breath.

I'm hoping April will be calmer.

(And can I just point out that my father-in-law, on THE DAY HE WAS RELEASED from the hospital, went right to work in his garden?!?!?!  Pretty awesome.)

But I hate this feeling.  The shifting sands.  I realize it will come up every now and again, and at least it's not permanent, like it used to feel.  But that's exactly it: It reminds me, quite viscerally, of the Bad Old Days. Which makes me want to hide under the bed until it passes.
Not that that works.  You have to face these things head-on, or they'll just keep comin' at ya!

So.  It's Monday morning.  Time to pull on my big-girl panties and deal.

Have a good one!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Just When You Think It's Hopeless...

You'd think I would have learned by now that everything is temporary.  But ESPECIALLY emotions.

Tuesday was one of THOSE days.  You now, when 8 bazillion little things go wrong.  Nothing catastrophic, nothing earth-shattering, just EVERY. LITTLE. THING.  The kind of day that makes you want to crawl back under the covers and sleep until it's over.  But you can't, because you are (ostensibly) a grown-up, with responsibilities.
I won't get into all the details. That would be dull AND would force me to relive it.  No thank you, very much.
Plus, there were a couple of big disappointments: It turns out that the workshop I was planning on taking in the Berkshires this summer, the one at the theater company where I started, just isn't possible for me this year.  And I'm REALLY bummed!  I'd been planning it for nearly a year, and with one fell swoop...well...down it went.
And then I let Hubby read the play I've been writing.  He REALLY didn't like it.
But...he was also very tired and cranky when he read it. And to be honest, it's not really his kind of thing, what I'm writing.
But I still felt cut off at the knees.
And then HE felt badly for making me feel that way.  It was a perfect circle of emotional wreckage, lol!

However, I had the play read last night in class, and all of the feedback was WONDERFUL!  They really loved it! They had terrific comments for me, extremely helpful.  And I got to be an actress again for a bit, and do the readings for 2 other plays.  It was a GREAT night!  We had food and wine and candles and it was all very lovely. I'm thinking we should all create a writer's group after the class has finished.  It's a terrific collection of folks.

And, again, it's so wonderful to be creative again.  To collaborate with like-minded people, to give and get feedback.  And this particular way of working is especially gratifying: Not just because it emanates from an acting standpoint, but because we've all gotten to see almost the entire process of everyone's play, from its birth to the (nearly) finished product.

So I'm riding a big high right now.  The exact opposite of how I felt 48 hours ago.
To be fair, I was also experiencing some of my whackadoo Post-Menstrual Syndrome depression.  Sunday was another rough day, and it had nothing to do with my play.  I'm starting to wonder if some of this may be perimenopause.  After all, I'm turning 45 this year, and my mom hit menopause at 49.

Finally, someone said something last night that gives me hope: I've been wondering lately if we're headed into a second Dark Ages.  But they said, what if we're already there?  What if we're IN those Dark Ages, and we're due for a renaissance?

I really, REALLY hope that's the case! I hope we can stop attacking each other (physically, virtually) and remember that we're only here for a short time, so we may as well get along.

And hopefully some great art will come out of it, as well.  :)

Thursday, March 20, 2014


Sorry for the absence.  The past couple of weeks have been a bit whack-a-doodle.
My mom was in town, which meant swimming for the kids and some shopping for me (woo-hoo!), but also lots o' busy-ness.  And WAY too much time in the car.
Then my father-in-law had to go back to the hospital.  He's got an infection in his leg where he had the surgery in January, and some fluid in his lungs.  He's still there, and probably will be for a couple more days.  It's worrisome, of course.
Yesterday was Hubby's birthday.  I had my class, but wanted to make him a special dinner before I left.  I'm quite proud of the results.  He's taking LG camping this weekend, and I'm alternating between joy and dread.  It's only 1 night, and I'm sure it'll be fine.  But, well, I'm a Jewish mother, I worry.  It's like oxygen.

I've also had a number of meetings with the kids' teachers and therapists.  There have been a few new behaviors, and their IEPs are coming up. Which means it's nearly spring break, which means it's almost the end of the school year.
And how the heck did THAT happen?!?!?!?!  It seems like the school year just started!

I'm still working on getting LG to camp.  Even if it's only for a week.  He can't spend 3 months not socializing with other kids.  WG's schedule makes it a bit easier for her. And who knows?  Maybe at some point she'll be ready for camp, as well.

As for the workouts and the food, well, it all continues on apace.  Last week was less than stellar, but not horrible.  I bought myself a maxi dress, even though I feared the worst.  But when I put it on, it actually looked pretty good!  It's quite forgiving, hiding many lumps and bumps.  :) I'm sure I'll get A LOT of use out of it this Summer.
And my juicer and blender have been earning their keep.  My new favorite blend (and Hubby's, as well) is carrot, spinach, beet, and pear.  I've been blending up lots of soup, soaking cashews and dates, and generally experimenting.  Well, OK, using recipes that OTHERS have created while experimenting.  With 1 kitchen and 9 people, experimentation isn't always possible.

Speaking of which, there's a new cookbook out called "Oh, She Glows" that is fantastic!  Yesterday I made a roasted potato and asparagus salad with avocado dill dressing.  It was amazing!  So there's an official recommendation , if that's something you're into.

Check it out!  I made it all the way to the end of the post without mentioning either "Sherlock" or "Doctor Who."  A new record!
But there ARE new photos of DW filming in Cardiff, including a new creature, over on tumblr.
Just FYI.

See ya!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

I've Written a Fan Letter

Yup.  I'm a 44 year-old, semi-professional adult.  A mom of 2.  And I have written a fan letter, which I don't think I've done since I was 15.
I must say I'm a little embarrassed to admit this.  But then I think about what would happen if I were on the receiving end.  I always appreciated it when someone told me they enjoyed my work.  And this person has been a standard toward which I strive, professionally.  And personally, truth be told.  Because, by all accounts, this person is an incredibly kind and generous human being.  Which is not always easy when one is in the entertainment industry.
But more, I recently saw a fan video of this person taking time out to reassure a 5 year-old girl with autism that, yes, his character DOES want to be her friend, and he hopes she wants to be his.  He made her (and her family's) day, and mine.  The video has gone viral, and folks in the autism community are cheering.  A lot of people on the spectrum have said that seeing it has given them hope.
So I've written a letter, thanking this individual for making a difference, and telling them how much I like their work.

I haven't mailed it yet.  Because there are a couple of things I want to change.  Plus, I'm also sending along some drawings my son made for them.
And I'm vacillating between nerves and embarrassment.
Because I'm 44, not 15.  And a part of me thinks I'm too damn old for this sort of thing.

In other news, I think I've been cast in a show!  It's Equity waiver, so I won't get paid or anything.  But it'll be the first show I've done in 11 years!
And I'm kind of excited!

In less-happy news, there's some tension here because of the relationship between my niece and the dog.  As in, she's almost 2 and loves to do things like grab his tail and put her hand in his mouth.  He's very patient, but her parents are, understandably, nervous. So we're running an experiment: I'm keeping him upstairs, in our living area, with the security gate up while her parents are at work (my mother-in-law watches her during the day, but she's also taking care of my still-recuperating father-in-law).  When they come home, he will have the run of the house.
Not that he runs much. He mostly lounges.  He is 8 years old, after all.  And he's never hurt another soul.  I'm REALLY hoping this works, because I'd like to keep him here.  He's kinda like my step-dog, and I love him like crazy.
I'm worried.
And a little pissed off.  Because he's a dog, not a car.  They adopted him when he was a puppy.  He's family.  And you don't just send family away.  If they do, he won't understand why, or that it is not his fault.  It's heartbreaking. And I don't have much say in the matter, because he's not "my" dog, and she isn't my child.

I'll keep you posted. Until then, here's hoping for the best!