friend texted me support, saying:
“You’re DOING SHIT!”
read blogs, Magical Accidental Orgasm (and I can tell from the stats list that
many people find it by searching “Accidental Orgasm” on Google!). The blog was
about my realization that I was waiting for someone to come along and prescribe for me my life, my bliss, my path without me doing much of anything. I was waiting for someone to (metaphorically!) “give me orgasms,” as I cribbed from The Vagina Monologues.
This morning I woke up and practiced
the bass line for the set my band is playing on Saturday.
Tomorrow, I’m going to take my first voice lesson from someone who comes with
great recommendations. And Sunday, I will start rehearsal for Addam’s
Family: The Musical (which still just gets
such the kick out of me!).
Wednesday Addams for Halloween. So I guess it’s appropriate that 20 years
later, I play her mother!)
despite my thinking – I continue to put good things in my path. I honestly don’t
remember how I found that audition call.
friend/acting mentor last Sunday to help me in my newbie, greenness. She is the
one who suggested the song I sang for my auditions, and who recommended this voice
teacher. She invited me to come over last Wednesday and practice my monologue in front of her.
go of the “life as singer” life to ask her how I could get out of my bubble
of not being seen. She had many great suggestions, just to get me out and
singing. Like choruses, and meet-ups, and this piano bar I didn’t know about
that’s here in the East Bay.
shit. Doing shit is scary!! But I
also don’t want to wait for someone else to press play on my life, because that
person is not coming. I don’t want to wait for the trumpet blast or starting gun or treasure map or even Ed McMahon, because they’re not coming.
doubts, self-derision, scarcity mind, I continue to ask for help and put myself
in the path of … shit.
into a friend and jokingly said if you need a second bassist, and in fact, he
was just trying to put back together this side project, but thought I wasn’t
doing music anymore. Well, now! Yes, please! And so, here we are, about to play
myself and to my dreams, not to mention to others. Having to show up with other
people means that I can’t flake out. I have to wake up and practice, or I’ll be
disappointed and disappointing. I have to make audition dates, or I’ll languish
in “someday” and “wouldn’t it be nice.” I have to take voice lessons, show up
at piano bars, take suggestions, or I will continue to say, “Not good enough,
not really, not me.”
and called my brother, too. Who told me I’m awesome. And who I told back that
he is, too.
role of Morticia in “Addams Family: The
The one I auditioned for this weekend to my own mediocre reviews. The one I was
called back for, to my own mediocre reviews.
tells me, may be two very different things.
I’ve been offered in as many months. From, “you know your height gets in your
way” to “please join us” … Wow.
silence on my bed, breathing heavy from the fist pumping, Elaine-thumbs-out
you, Molly, for showing up even though you’re scared and doubtful. Thank you,
FRIENDS, for receiving those phone calls and texts that ask you to send me love
and support. Thank you, friends, for sending love and “likes” and hope.
to marvel at. Really.
that I will spend my October 7th birthday in performance.
31st in a hospital bed, saying, “Next year: Brunch, huh?”
kids whose laughter is part of my salvation.
have let languish in a faded costume closet. The clothing of another woman in
dreams, and hold them up to reality. They may be more solid than I’ve wanted to
sure I haven’t done since I wrote it in November 2012. Particularly appropriate
today is the following:
know by now, I pull back at some point. Painting, acting, writing, singing. I
will spend a few months active in pursuance of these interests, and then wane.
I will talk myself back from it, in any number of ways, and move back into my
first, I sang a bit of a song (“Whatever Lola Wants,” from Damn Yankees) and a bit of a monologue (Sherry Johnson, from The
high school; I only just heard the whole song on Monday; and I’d never
practiced it with an accompanist before. Let’s just say, I could have done
auditions where I really bombed, where I
said, “I’m so sorry can I start again…” three times! So I know what really bombing is! And I survived.)
A Musical (HAHAH!!!), I was to prepare only
a song, and I sang the same one, this time a little better. But.
It’s one that this whole week I’ve been nervous about hitting, not because I
can’t, but because I can’t when I’m holding back. It’s not an unattainable
note at all: it’s one I can’t reach when I’m nervous about it, scared I can’t hit it,
and am psyching myself out, even as I come to that line.
note. And that’s precisely what happened at yesterday’s audition.
That’s exactly what happened.
Team Molly, and laughed really hard
about how I bombed it. The silence of the auditors, the awkwardness, the sad
case of the whole thing – I laughed.
Because, really, what else can you do? It’s over, it’s done. I can get all
butthurt and self-flagellating, or I can ask myself what I learned from the
the brain gremlins on my drive home: What did I learn?
take classes or lessons, if I’m serious about doing this. Which I am.
I’m really serious about making a go of this, then I have to literally put my
money (and energy) where my mouth is. I have to invest in myself.
things, and see what kind of results I get. Sure. That’s totally one way to do
this. But. That’s not at all what I want. I don’t want to feel I gave it a
This is lip service.
morning, “I did really well because I showed up anyway!!”
hopelessness, which would be really easy. And which would look like coming home
to a pint of ice cream and 8 hours of Netflix.
up with friends for an hour to hear their brain dump, and share a little of
come home and isolate. I made plans with a friend to get out of both our comfort
zones and go to this poetry open mic thing that happens monthly nearby. Neither
of us were going to read, but just to go to check it out. Try something new.
And not be alone in our heads.
thoughts, for my “not good enough” thoughts. I got into the day and out of
myself. And what all of this does is allows me to show up again next time.
Because who wants to show up again for something that you tell yourself you
myself with a steadfast vision by taking classes and making sure that I don’t
have to feel so psyched out and unprepared next time.
Family audition, anyway. 😉 Wish me luck!… No, forget luck. Wish me love.
or not be in a play?” anymore. Maybe that’s what it was a year ago. But my
vision has changed, as visions are allowed to do. And more, it’s
probably that I’ve allowed myself to see more of my vision, rather than it actually
at least you have a job.
when we’re living in integrity with our values in as many places in our lives
as possible, we’re doing more good – for ourselves and for the world.
are living lives that are engaged, they inspire me. There are circumstances
that can keep us from this expression of our true selves and skills, surely.
There’s war famine racism classism sexism disease and all manner of ill
fortune. I recognize the privilege it is that I’ve been able to crawl out of (and partially
been born out of) the first tier of “Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs,” out of the
pure and simple satisfaction of the needs for food, shelter, clothing, and
several years ago. I was in the car with a friend when my cell rang. I
answered, we spoke a few minutes, and the call ended. What struck me later wasn’t the content of the call, but how I behaved during the call. My friend overheard every word and all the
manner and mannerisms that came out during my conversation – and those
behaviors would align perfectly with how I interact with my friend.
myself in relation to my mom and how I was in relation to my friend. That
alignment of “personalities” was completely new to me. I was always someone different with friends, coworkers, family
members, lovers. Although there are necessary adjustments you need to make in
those various relationships, I was always way out of alignment – they all were completely disparate personalities.
the films of who I am,” as I later put it. It wasn’t about a shift from
wearing different masks to wearing the same mask; it was about relieving myself
of the masks at all – and being the same ol’ me no matter where, when, or who.
predicaments these days: How to bring the same person, with the same
boundaries, needs, and self-esteem, to work, to play, to relationship.
films of ourselves. Not participating in self-abandonment, and bringing every
endeavor and relationship into the light, and questioning if it meets our
standards of what we want for ourselves, and if we’re meeting those standards through our own action.
cease settling for less in many areas of my life; it’s another endeavor
entirely to take actions that support that desire. Again, that’s integrity – being who you say you want to be.
When my friend last night told me that her “intuitive hit” was that I could
find work that I love, I began to well up. It’s not about permission to do the play or not do the play, even — it’s about giving myself permission to do that which I love. In every arena of my life right now, I’m
endeavoring to find that which I love – which starts from acknowledging
and listening to and giving enough credence to self-love to do that.
are still these fissures of contrary action, I’m offering a divided message to
“the Universe,” but mostly to myself. If I engage in that which doesn’t feed my
soul and my joy-meter, I’m giving the message that it’s (still) okay to abandon my
desires, and that my desires aren’t that important to me anyway.
Universe, one in which I am myself – self-confident with a hint of doubt, a vehement believer in the need for joy and
alignment, more than a tad bit wacky – no matter who’s on the other line.
not at all. It’s awful.
it,” she concluded.
sorry. The thing is, that’s a huge commitment for somewhere you don’t want to
be. You’d be wasting time that you could use honing your craft, going on other
auditions, taking classes, and finding something you really
want to do.”
who’s a semi-professional actress when I told her I was having doubts about the play in which I’m cast. She said these were the 3 golden questions
her acting teacher said the actor had to answer for himself. The instructor,
being at a higher level, said that for him, he has to answer Yes to all three
of those questions. For my friend, mid-tier, she was told, No more crap jobs:
She has to answer Yes to at least two of those questions.
saying my time means to me?
search. If a guy continues to get promoted up through the ranks at a company he
doesn’t enjoy, doing work he hates, but is paid really well, is that enough? I can’t say.
paid well, doing work we love or working with people we enjoy… well, what are
to career, why are we there? Why are we wasting any days of this short life?
which I’ve been cast. When I told her again that I auditioned for him 3 times — meaning, I feel that he’s already put such time and effort into me and my performance I’d feel guilty dropping out — she
replied, “Take care of yourself, not them.” … Oh… right.
hours nearly every day of the week for two months… for a really awful play. It’s really awful, folks. Not like, passable,
manageable, I’m just being picky — It’s really awful. It’s terribly written. I’d walk out, if I were an audience member.
wouldn’t be in it – and if it’s not, then that’ll show up, too. I roll my eyes
every time I read the script. I say aloud to my cat, “This is a really awful
play,” each time I start to rehearse it.
asked my friend, What about having to work your way up the ladder, and take
shitty jobs at first? She pointed me back to those three questions. Where are my values?
over something that I’m not proud of? Is it about status? Is it about feeling this proves that I’m worthy; that I’m good?
That doesn’t compute.
run lines for this play. I’m hoping to get insight in conversation with him –
if it’s really as awful as I think it is.
everything, but don’t go to callbacks if it’s a terrible play!
corollary: It’s great to say Yes to the first date or interview. But after
that, you’ve garnered enough information to know if you want to try it out again
or not. I don’t have to show up a second time, if I’m really sure this is not a fit.
of the Amazons. It makes me feel worthy and proud and like I’m not making a huge mistake in going after this dream. But isn’t the mistake not respecting what really want, and settling for (way) less, just so I can say I have a lead? Isn’t the mistake I’ve been loathe to make in relationships settling for less than I want, just so I can say I have a partner?
something, instead of just clocking time?
company I saw perform briefly on Saturday. Last week, after telling me I didn’t in fact get a ‘Pride and Prejudice’ role as I’d thought, the producer of the company I’ve
been auditioning with these past few weeks continued, “You must know your
height gets in your way.….
like to introduce you to the director.”
commune cult Renaissance patchwork crystal-wearing children-of-the-corn-toting ensemble performance.
he invited me to stay for the performance, which I could only for a few
minutes, and then the producer called on Wednesday to say the director would like
to audition me. And yesterday he did.
listed on my resume, and I said yes. So he asked me to bring it. And I did,
along with my guitar, since I really am only a novice at bass, and can’t really
improvise how some might.
previous performances. Despite being achingly weird, some of them, they were
interesting. Achingly weird. He said American theater bores him – he’s Italian.
sang. And it was strange, just us two, but so nice to be back behind an
instrument again. My throat is sore from it, from being out of practice – just
another muscle, you can’t just decide to
run a marathon without training.
the Queen of the Amazons.
it was great to have his feedback on what I was doing, like a private acting
lesson. “Be more open, more proud, you’re a queen.” Smile, melt us with your smile, make us love you even when you’re
angry. Speak from down here, not up here. Crouch, get physical, you’re an
vulnerable. And it’s still unclear to me if I’m “in,” and because of my “too-soon” (my brain can’t find the word I mean – need more coffee) — PREMATURE!! — that’s it — premature declaration the other week about landing a role, I’m
cautious to do that here. But. It seems very positive. And even if not, I got
some great notes.
around acting. That it would be worth it for me to look up classes or lessons
again. If I do get this role, it’s
intense, starring, physical, musical, and (word for pushing & challenging I
can’t think of). It may be more than I can chew, but I’ll face that if I get
was the director inviting me to be more queenly, assertive, confident. To allow what he saw as I played my instruments and sang. To let that person out. To not
be a queen through me and my mishegas (not his word!), but to be a queen as she would be.
at work, and on the ride asked myself aloud, “What does it feel like to be a queen?”
broken, but you’re not – and you’ve got to keep going.”
had to go assist at a work event, and then head to an audition for a play. I
really wasn’t feeling it.
time to go on vacation. In the meantime, I did go on vacation, and had
elaborate experience and processing about relationships, values, love. I also
got clearer about my career goals, and implemented some action around them at work,
which not surprisingly, I was told last week were great ideas but probably
aren’t going to happen “within the next year,” if at all. So, there’s been
processing around that, too.
check-points of where I am, where I want to be personally and professionally.
And so I showed up to that audition, late and lost in the hills of Berkeley, with
little more than the feet I was standing on.
really had forgotten that I love this stuff. I’d forgotten the titillation and
excitement, and the nervous sizing-up from the other auditioners, and the
frantic reading of sides before your name is called, wondering if you’re
supposed to do an accent or not.
pulled me back to center, away from the future-gazing, away from the
grief-feeling. I still feel off today, and that’s alright, but for a few
minutes yesterday, I got to do something I love doing, simply for the effort of
trying it. I got to meet other women trying it too, and have a coffee date to
pick one’s brain on the whole “Bay Area Theater Biz.”
just want to do because it’s fun and not because my life or income or goals
depend on it. It’s strange to just have the fun thing simply because it’s
fun. There’s no stepping stone here, no ladder, no life plan founded on it.
It’s an extraneous, avocational, extra-curricular dalliance, and isn’t that so needed right now?
band-ing again, playing bass again. Simply for the same reason. I forgot what
it’s like to have fun. To do the things I find fun.
strategies and my goals, it’s been satisfying and reinforcing and relieving,
but it hasn’t been fun. In fact, it’s been hella lonely in some ways I don’t
long-established, report-having friends. It, too, reinforced something – that
combination of history and laughter and understanding and ease. It, too, brought me back to a sense of myself, a
little lost in the myopia of “life planning.”
to be more to life than this.”
admit this blog kinda bored me, but I’m putting it up anyway. achievement
even the acting (I’ll be auditioning again on Saturday) — it’s been a lot
easier, though not easy, to take the action and let the results be what they
trip and the acting is that indeed, the action was worth it, regardless the
results. In fact, that the results are still positive: I get to feel the joy of trying, and the smile associated with
remembering. I get to feel proud for showing up, and a sense of peace around
having not “gotten my way” or gotten in my way – unlike the outcome of projecting.
the effort. It could be easy to dismiss, and say, That wasn’t worth my time
since I didn’t get what I want – but, we know, I did. I got to spend time with
someone I enjoy; I got to experience auditioning (and even acting). I got to
see who and how I am in relationship, in perseverance, in something new – and I like who I was,
and who I saw.
plan. I’ve been eligible for almost half a year, and it’s been on my list of
“action items” to talk to the accountant at work, find out how much would be
taken out of my paycheck to hit the minimum, which would be matched by my
this kind of benefit… and I’ve been scared to look. What if there isn’t enough
for me now? What if there won’t be enough for me later? What if it’s too late?
What if …
And the truth, like my student loans, could be a lot more palatable than I
saw the highlighted figures on the page, and then stuffed the paper into my purse! Carrying around this step toward clarity without actually looking is still being in vagueness.
It’s better to try than not try. It’s better to live in reality than in
fantasy, mostly because my fantasies are pretty nihilistic.
year, it’s that trying can actually be fun.
No matter the outcome.
band. And how freaking fun that was. It was some work, and not always serene,
but it was fun. It was enlivening.
and the importance of that experience in my life.
can support those retirement contributions, modest though they are. But, also,
I’ve learned that my estimation of things can skew toward scarcity and fear, so
I’ll be taking those numbers to friends who can help me get more perspective on
them, since there may be a truth that I can’t see through that fog.
wanna band again. Active verb. To band. I want to band.
& lack of down time: I’m actually good at this acting thing. And I enjoy it.
audience, watching the other actors before my scene perform, I got a
few minutes to gather myself, and reflect. Something the director said during
the “let’s get PUMPED” speech before we got into costume helped to remind me:
She said, This is for you. This isn’t
for your friends, your parents, your partners: This is for you.
repeated to myself. I remembered that this isn’t for a resume, for a good story
to tell when I’m older; this isn’t for accolades or for money. I am doing this
acting thing, because I enjoy it.
Because it’s FUN. Because, once I do get through rush hour traffic from Berkeley, once I do find parking in the Mission behind some dude drinking Steel Reserve and
selling electronics out of his car, once I do get upstairs through the weird
haunted building, I come to a black box theater.
to share myself. I’m there to engage in something I thoroughly enjoy, just
for the sake of it. How fucking novel.
wine&cheese reception after the show by a cute little gay boy and his girl
friend, to have them sidle up during a conversation with a beamish grin, and
tell me how great my performance was. That they got chills. To ask if I did
that thing with my hands on purpose, and wow, you did? Wow. That was so great.
doing is enjoyed and appreciated by others—that’s true, too. (We are only so spiritual!)
another person. To affect an audience, to help them experience something? Sure, Mol, sure. Yes, you can enjoy the
accolades, too. As long as they’re not what’s driving you.
maybe I’m not cut out for this—that
maybe this hustle is a younger person’s game. Maybe it’s too late for me to be
high-tailing it all over creation in service of a pipe dream.
a production that was taking all my time & memorization space. Part of it is that I
know I’m going out of town in April, and didn’t want to audition for anything
new when I’ll be gone. (Cuz, it seems to me that working actors can’t
really take vacation…)
grueled instead of fueled.
process. Part of that “put in the hard work to enjoy the results” thing that I’m so
loathe to do most of the time. HARD
I had last night. Sure, I fucked up some lines, but people didn’t seem to
notice. I still got to feel the sense of “right place.” In the chair, on
the stage, in front of lights so bright you can only make out shapes in the
audience; hearing the sound cues, the mounting tension of my scene, the
mounting tension I bring to my scene.
Getting to be there, getting to sit in that chair and show you what I’ve got –
It was… well, enlivening.
are so engaged that you feel out of time, out of the chaos of place, when you are so in something that
“time just flies,” – it’s called being “in the flow.” When you are so engaged
in what you are doing, when you are so enjoying what you are doing that you are somehow matching the heartpace of the Universe. When for moments or even hours, you just feel in it – your speed
aligns with the speed of life, and you flow, you coast, you glide.
awaiting my scene that I remembered something I sometimes do: I survived cancer to be here, and I am HERE. Staking a claim. Making a name. Claiming my own.
pressure, toll bridges are lost – and I’m just there.