Tonight is the first free evening I’ve had in a while – my play’s run having finished on Sunday. I’m surprised it took this long to get to a free day, in which I had few obligations to keep me away. In fact, I had to ignore a prior commitment to make this appointment with myself.
I hadn’t intended to write anything tonight; there was no real reason for that, it just wasn’t in my mind. But I’ve missed it. Whenever I pick up acting or singing or dance or writing, and one of those as a result, I miss it. I’m not sure how to fit them all into my life at the same time, I’m just not, but it’s clear that I need all four to feel completely happy. What a strange thought.
There were a number of other things I had planned to do with my first free evening in over two months, but the depression hit about the moment I entered my room. After setting my backpack down on my bed, I found I could not get up again – could not force myself to do anything productive or leave. I had a birthday party invite from one of my castmates from the play, and I simply could not make myself go. Granted, I had asked her for details and she hadn’t gotten back to me yet, but still I could have gone and I didn’t. I told myself I didn’t have the money – but I could have. I told myself I didn’t get her a gift and I didn’t – but I could’ve brought a card or bought her a drink or something. I gave myself all these excuses, but I realize now that it was the depression talking.
Show runs end – another audition lies around the corner – school goes on – work never ends – and the damn sun keeps on rising and setting on the same bloody schedule every day of the year. Here I sit, wishing that once – just once – it would stay down and let me sleep for a while.
I got quite a lot of good news this week relating to my voice training and performance, but post-show depression has managed to trump even that. Finals are in 8 weeks, I have a lot of catching up to do and a lot of auditions coming up – I do not have time to be depressed. On the other hand, I need to deal with this so that the stress of it doesn’t eat at my body and cause me to get sick again.
There are so many paths my life could have taken – I can see so many different endings from moments now long behind me. I could be a mother now, married to my first serious boyfriend out of high school. He was going to propose to me, which I only found out after I broke up with him. I wasn’t happy and I had no idea why, but my friends and family convinced me that he was the reason. To be fair to them he was a rather large part of it, but not the only reason.
Later, I fell for line of the wrong men – each in a horrible time in their lives, each broken in his own way, and each made me more and more unhappy. I could have shut my mouth and landed with any one of them, but I kept fluttering away (sometimes chased and sometimes during pursuit). I even fell for the wrong woman – who turned out to be crazier than any guy I’d dated previously.
The wrong woman led me away from my first main cage and into one of her own making. It’s funny how much someone can love you when you’re free to fly away, how much they loath you once they’ve locked you up behind their bars, and how much they shame you for trying to or even succeeding in breaking free. Once I was thinking for myself, I realized how crazy and controlling she was and saw how I’d placed myself into that situation, questioning nothing and letting myself feel as though I deserved it and couldn’t do better – yet more reasons for my unhappiness. I left.
I can see, however, a life that could have led from that. A marriage. An adoption. The gods forbid, a pregnancy (not hers because she was hell-bent against that, but my body wasn’t hers so it mattered far less that I was hell-bent against doing that to myself). A house. A lot of unhappy years at a job I didn’t like to support her and the kids – well, him now. I can picture it so clearly now.
All of these possibilities lurk in my peripheral vision, endless futures that will never be. I don’t want them and I don’t wish I could go back and make any one of them a reality. The only thing I wish is that I could go back and tell this amateur figure skater that no adult knew fully what they were talking about. That a young woman who started skating at 15 could go on to make a future for herself by following her dreams – it might be unrealistic but realism is overrated anyway. I wish I could tell her that she was beautiful and bright and talented, and that she should ignore anyone who told her otherwise. I wish that I could tell her that she could do anything she wanted to do as long as she worked her ass off, and stubbornly pushed against every block others placed in her way. I wish that anyone would have told me these things – just once.
The thing is – I’ve finally realized these things about myself, and it only took a lot of years of good friends and even some random acquaintances telling me these things over and over again before I could allow myself to hear them. I know I’m not alone in feeling this way or discovering these things later in life. Hell, I think it’s so common that anyone who manages to read this far can post this on their own blog as though it were their own with few to no edits. Yea, I’m that confident. That does not, however, mean it’s a useless thing to state or write here.
Because I can see it now – a bright future doing exactly what I want to do with my life and, yes, making a living that way. I can see it. It only took me ****** some-odd years, and a lot of what I used to think were empty compliments – words that people just threw at one another – until I really started to hear what was being said to me.
Writing – I’m going to do my best not to abandon it in my pursuit of other passions. I need this, too – this release. It keeps me sane, clears my head of all of the echoes and needless chatter or screaming. And silence is the best state in which a mind to finally get some sleep.