August 14, 2018

Another tough day. When will it get easier? When will I be able to function normally again? Ever?

I tried to write today but couldn’t due to stressful circumstances and the endless grief. Then I tried to watch Netflix to distract myself, but instead bit off all my fingernails that I’d finally grown out and ate a bag of Milanos. Wouldn’t want to stop there, so I also ate half a baguette and drank 5 glasses of iced tea and a bag of Smart Food, THEN I finally put on a bra at 8 PM to leave the house and realized I haven’t showered in 4 days. I left anyway.

Grief is hard. It’s very distracting and emotionally draining and devastating and makes it nearly impossible to do anything useful with your time. I’m supposed to have a script done by tomorrow, but I can’t focus on it and just keep randomly cutting out lines of dialogue or deleting sections or adding new ones in that don’t make sense and don’t fit. So I took an appropriate-length 30 page script and turned it into 40 pages and then got distracted by cookies and stress.

Day 65 – Grief Sucks

July 29, 2018

Every once in a while, you have a day where you are reinvigorated to continue to pursue your dream and/or wake up tomorrow at a normal time and actually brush your teeth and perhaps interact with other humans. One or the other. Am I right? I had one of those days today. Something happened that reminded me that this life is definitely the one that I am (unfortunately) going to have to continue to pursue BECAUSE I HATE/LOVE IT AND IT HATE/LOVES ME BACK. And THEN I was reminded that my career choice is also the reason for 95% of my anxiety. So… winning all around.

Also, side note, I like to eat chocolate after 11 PM on top of the two other desserts I had. I like to take naps on my couch. I like to re-watch shows on Netflix that most people wouldn’t even watch once. I like to talk about working out but rarely do it because it’s time consuming and boring and difficult and finding parking in LA is like finding a needle in a haystack and it makes me want to murder people. I like to eat pasta, in fact I like to eat all the pasta I can find. I like to turn on as many fans as possible and point them directly at my face because I sweat a lot and I seriously hate the heat. I like to write at night when it’s quiet and no one can annoy me. I like to cuddle with my puppy but I hate taking her for walks because she’s a terrible walker, it’s hot out, and I don’t want to be where the people are. I like to drink coffee in the morning because I can put a lot of creamer and sugar in it, not because I like the taste, which is like dirty, bitter water. I like to hint to people that I need help getting more writing jobs, but I hate using my friendships to get them so I kind of casually mention them while acting like it’s not a big deal and downplaying my talent and basically talking them out of helping me, even for free, even at all. I like to wait until it’s too late to do my laundry and then the laundry machines are full all day on the day I decide to do it, leaving me with no clean underwear. I like to be out of quarters as well when I finally DO try to do my laundry. I like to check my phone every few seconds to see if anyone has texted or called while also hating everyone and hoping no one has texted or called; when I see that no one has, I like to be devastated that I don’t have any friends and mope around for a while before eating my feelings in the shape of desserts. I like to talk myself out of being good enough for jobs and then when I get so tired of doing this, I like to fall asleep on my couch with my head at an awkward angle on the pillow so my neck hurts all night. AAAAND rinse and repeat. I’m a treat to be around.

None of those things take away from the fact that I did, actually, feel reenergized about the passion I have for my career, even if it didn’t in any way clarify how I’m supposed to get there or motivate me to do anything other than sit on my couch. Still… A good day overall.

Day 49 – Things I like and Pursuing My Dreams

July 27, 2018

Ups and downs, baby. Today was a mixed bag of crazy, but in the end, I’m on my couch watching Netflix, so I’m not going to complain.

Oh, by the way, living up to my potential SUCKS. What is with people deciding I have potential? Then I just disappoint them. My mom explained the amount of disappointment today. But I was eating a giant chocolate chip cookie at the time, so all I heard was, “yum, this is so good.” Probably coming from my mouth, but who cares? Life hack.

I remember the glory days when my good grades and hard work and big dreams were rewarded, and I didn’t have to PAY ANY BILLS or WORRY ABOUT REAL LIFE THINGS and then during spring break, SOMEONE ELSE PAID FOR MY VACATION TO HAWAII. Why did I want to grow up so fast? Oh, yeah, living with my family. Well, now I’m being dragged back and there are STILL BILLS and NO VACATIONS so I feel like that did not work out at all in my favor.

I’m not complaining, I’m just saying being an adult is THE WORST. I get the “freedom” to eat whatever I want and do whatever I want. If I can afford it. Which I can’t. So… What exactly did I get out of this? No idea.

Day 47 – Adulting and Potential SUCK

July 9, 2018

Oh, today was one of those days where I started questioning EVERYTHING. I went to this Writer’s Group and not only were all the “Oh, I just decided to write this today because why not?” scenes amazing and well-written, but they were also clever ideas and very successful people (already working at their craft, PAID, and no one with side jobs at Uber or Starbucks – which is not to insult either of those, but to insinuate that not everyone chooses those careers for life).

And I was just sitting there, eating coffee cake, wondering if I should rewrite a scene where I have my character get stuck in a box. WE CAN’T ALL BE QUENTIN TARANTINO OR ALFRED HITCHCOCK OR NORA EPHRON OR ISSA RAE. SOME OF US HAVE TO BE SOMEONE ELSE THAT YOU’VE MAYBE HEARD OF BUT PROBABLY NOT.

I just realized, quite quickly, that my ideas are not very original, my writing is dialogue-heavy and not very interesting, and I should maybe stick to writing picture books (I can’t draw). What a DAY, PEOPLE. There are some days where I wonder if I was put on this planet to simply take up space and singlehandedly support the restaurant business in Los Angeles. (And disappoint my mother. Lest we forget…)

So now I’m questioning absolutely everything like 1. Should I even be a writer? 2. Do I actually look terrible as a blonde? 3. At what point does it stop being cute that I’m steadily gaining weight? A LOT OF WEIGHT?!? 4. How much Netflix is research and how much is too much? 5. Is there a way to ensure I’m reborn as a dog, but not just any dog, my dog, who is the cutest and gets all the loves and naps and food she wants? 6. BUT, LIKE, FOR REAL: SHOULD I BE A WRITER?

Day 29 – Questions. No answers.

July 8. 2018

Aaaaand I still haven’t made a decision about my work stuff. I have decided that the best course of action is to ignore it until it becomes impossible to avoid or they give up on me and go away. This is normal, right? I’m fine. Nothing to see here, folks.

The crime thriller I was watching finished (as in, I binge-watched it for two days), and it was definitely a thriller until the end, when they tried to wrap it up but it didn’t make any sense. Somehow – in this tiny town surrounded by walls with a gated entrance and 100 total residents – somehow there are several murderers, fires, missing people, etc. and it isn’t until you’re thinking back on it that you realize that it’s completely insane for so much to happen in one place but also, hot damn was that a good show. It kept me fascinated the entire time. So, thank you to the creators of such a plot-hole-filled murder mystery that had me gasping out loud and immediately turning on the next episode, no time to wait the 15 seconds for the next one to play.

One of my best friends moved away today. It seems like such an important moment, an important goodbye, but when it comes down to it, you’re just like, “Well, bye” and then they leave. I set down the playing card I was holding, stood up awkwardly, hugged him for longer than I would have, and then waited for him to walk out the door so I could run to the bathroom because I really had to pee.

Goodbyes are like that. They’re so built up but in the moment there’s just nothing to do but say the words and go back to the way your life was and will be from now on. You miss them, for sure, and you feel their absence from the moment it occurs, but there’s just nothing else to be done. They leave. You go pee and start playing cards again with one fewer player. How sad and uneventful at the same time that is.

I will miss him a lot and yet it’s not until right this moment that I even thought about him again, and that’s because I remembered he still has some of my stuff. He left 8 and a half hours ago and I just thought of him now for the first time since then because I realized he has my protein shaker and I probably won’t see that again. So which one am I sadder about? The shaker or the friend? Just kidding, it’s obvious. I hope they both come back.

Day 28 – Missing Friends and Thrilling Crime.

July 5, 2018

This day had more ups and downs than an emotional roller coaster ride with my ex-boyfriend. I woke up late (nice), but then had to rush around and do a bunch of work (no real rushing – did it from the couch, but felt behind in the work – not as nice). I finished that in time to shove a bunch of food in my face, but then had to get to the gym. That’s where I died. I died today at the gym. RIP self. Then I suddenly came back to life in time to clean my entire house while watching Netflix in the background and wondering how women ever do it all. All I want is a maid, a chef, an assistant, a second maid, and someone to kill the spider for me that I swear was the size of my hand that instead I had to kill before it gathered an army, told them where I was, and came after me in full force.

But the real highlight was definitely the guacamole I made. That’s right, it was the highlight. I thought I’d done a brilliant job. I set it out for a meeting and proudly presented it to the attendees. And then proceeded to eat it all myself. No one, I mean NO ONE, touched it except for me, so OF COURSE I had to eat all of it.

Then I opened up some white cheddar popcorn and no one ate that, either, so I downed it. Sometimes living in LA with all these skinny people has its downsides. Or upsides, depending on how you look at it. Either you see the glass half full – I got all of the food to myself, or you see the glass half empty – that I shoved food in my face while other people watched and judged. Answer: The glass is actually full of air, because water has too many calories.

Also, I had to leave a candle lit in the bathroom because I have a dog who likes to pee in there (on a pee pad) and it’s not a pleasant smell. But I forgot to blow it out AND to warn those same guests that she also likes to poop wherever she chooses. I found out after they left that 1. The candle is now gone and was my one defense against the smell and 2. Someone stepped in the poop and walked through my house. I am now on de-poopifying duty. Shhhhh. I do not want to talk about how I need to train my dog better.

Day 25 – Roller Coasters and Eating Alone and Dog Poop.

July 1, 2018

You know when you have one of those days where you’re like, “I got this. I’m going to get stuff done. Today is going to be super productive,” and then you do one thing and you’re like, “I’m exhausted. That was enough effort for today”???

That was me. That was definitely me. I went to a backyard party/lunch thing and after an hour or two, I told everyone that I needed to leave so I could head home and get some work done. I made this huge deal out of leaving to go work – “No, guys, if I don’t work on this, I’ll keep putting it off, and it’ll never get done.”

I have to go work. 30 minutes later, I was home, on the couch, watching Gilmore Girls and eating chips. I really did have the best of intentions to get work done. I really did leave so I could be productive. But then I got home and it just felt like I’d expended all the energy I had being social and also, they were very convincing when they said I could do it later. It didn’t convince me to stay and hang out with them, but it did convince me once I got home that I could just let that whole getting things done concept go and relax instead. I fully embraced the notion that I had done all I could do (by 2 PM). So pathetic.

Day 21 – Unproductive. Procrastinating.

June 19, 2018

One of my friends, Molly, asked me to cover for her at a workshop. It has been a hot minute since I’ve done any real, tangible work related to my career goals, so I jumped at the chance. But I had to play it cool, so I was like “ugh, when and where is it?” But then I got worried she’d find someone else so I followed that up immediately with, “but yes I’m going to do it no problem doesn’t matter where or when should I go now and stake the place out?”

This got me thinking about Molly. She’s incredibly good at keeping busy with workshops and screenings and filming… She flies to London, then back to LA to have a meeting or shoot a scene or attend a VIP event, then to the Bay Area, then back to London, then back to LA, all while maintaining a successful career. And I just put it together (because I have time, sitting here on my couch) that she makes all of this happen for herself. Basically, she hustles. I’m a bad hustler because I’m immediately concerned that people won’t like me and I am not good enough and I don’t know if I have enough to offer and when they ask “so what are you working on?” all casual and sweet and I will be like “bingeing shows on Netflix and working my way through a Ben&Jerry’s pint,” they won’t see me as an actual candidate (my fault, yes) so then I get all nervous and don’t go. The thing is, I know I have a lot to offer. But if you have to discuss your resume every time and then that gets you discounted because they want you to say “I wrote Book of Mormon” or I am a cast member on SNL – and you can’t say those things YET – then they immediately discount you and move on. But how are you ever supposed to get those things ONTO YOUR RESUME IF PEOPLE DISCOUNT YOU BEFORE KNOWING WHAT YOUR SKILLS ARE??? Sorry for yelling. It’s a tough world out there with all these Catch-22s. And all this debilitating anxiety.

But I don’t think Molly has any anxiety. Like, none at all. She just has confidence. Maybe she’s an alien.

I haven’t even been diagnosed. But, like, do you need an actual diagnosis when you’re breathing into a paper bag? Do you need a professional to tell you you have Generalized Anxiety Disorder when you’re picturing terrible things happening all the time and have constant knots in your stomach and worry about everyone and everything? No. No you do not. I can tell when I have a headache. I can tell when I have a cold. I can tell that I have anxiety. But I would like a solution for it that requires no effort and doesn’t necessitate going to see said professional, because that makes me anxious and then I won’t go/won’t do it. Possible? Yes? Does anyone out there know this anxiety life?

Day Nine – Anxious

June 17, 2018

I skipped a trip to Vegas partially because I felt bad that I hadn’t seen certain friends of mine for a while. But then they ended up working all day today so… I spent the entire day on my couch. Oh, until I went to Complete Foods to get cookies and brownies saying to myself “I’ll eat one today and one tomorrow,” and then ate two brownies and three cookies and now here we are.

Instead of doing something useful, I watched a documentary, then a romantic comedy, then more Parks and Recreation. And ate junk food. I don’t know how to do this right.

I called my dad for Father’s Day and he complained and talked a lot and then hung up on me when he got out of the car because “I don’t know how to get the dang thing off my car once I’m talking on it.”

The movie I watched was about a woman who is a writer who struggles to get her work seen and find love. But of course, within one hour of watching time and one month of movie time, that all changes. Love, work, friendship, success, career satisfaction, and the meaning of life all get worked out in one movie month and it’s, you know, a little disheartening to realize that if I were just a movie character instead of a real person, my shit would get figured out a whole lot faster.

But for some reason I have to figure out my own shit. What a crock. No one tells you about that. When I was a kid, no one sat me down and said, “hey, when you move out of here, you’ll have to pay for literally everything yourself, you cannot actually do anything you set your mind to (people have to hire you and to get hired, that’s called nepotism), and success is but a construct that everyone else you know will fulfill except you. Oh, and someone will invent Facebook and Instagram and people will start to pretend they’re perfect so you’ll get to contend with that. Good luck.”

I made a pizza, a to-do list, and washed dishes today. I also put on real pants (leggings). Where’s my gold star?

I checked my steps counter on my phone. 1700 steps. That’s not even a mile.

Day Seven – Well, I cried at a clip of someone singing on America’s Got Talent. If that tells you anything…

June 15, 2018

I bought over $500 worth of clothes today. Did I need them? No. Hardly anyone ever needs new clothes. But I bought them anyway because what feels better than a little retail therapy – especially when you can do it from THE COUCH??? Seriously, I can’t think of anything better other than a perfect chocolate chip cookie. I know I should be supporting local. I know I should only be buying one thing that I absolutely can use all the time that’s on sale and then donate something from my closet in exchange. Should.

I know I am doing it all wrong, constantly, every time. But when I open up my computer and within a few clicks find a dress I like, a coupon code, and put in the credit card number I’ve memorized from doing this so many times, and I’m in my pajamas with a TV show on in the background, well, Heaven may not be so far away after all.

I realize that 99.9% of what I’ve said that I’m doing is TV/food/shopping related, which is interesting because I define myself as much more well-rounded and far less shallow than that implies, but it seems like I am wrong. It’s possible, highly likely even, that I spend most of my time on the three things I listed above. Hmmm.

Well, I think food makes sense. We have to eat to live. Granted, I live to eat, but potato-potahto, right? Some people consider themselves foodies, but I’m far too picky and lazy to be a foodie. So, I just really love it? My pants tell me that’s true. The food wrappers on my coffee table tell me that’s true. (Sometimes, I realize that I must have eaten a lot due to the amount of food wrappers I’m surrounded by a la an entire frat house of boys, but then instead of adjusting my behavior, I just clean them up and throw them out so it doesn’t look like I ate anything at all. I feel like that solves the problem.)

Television is a real issue. I love it. It helps me get through the day. I mean, we did coin the term “Netflix and Chill,” so I’m obviously not alone. But maybe those people Netflix and Chill after work, instead of at noon with a Trader Joe’s cauliflower pizza cooking in the oven so they can pretend to be healthy while they snack on Milanos as they wait. I don’t know anyone who would do that, it’s clearly just a fictional story, but…

Shopping… I don’t do it often. I don’t even really like it all that much. If I’m in a store with someone, I get instantly bored and want to leave. I’d rather be anywhere else in the world. But if I’m at home…in my pajamas…and there’s a sale…and I hate all my clothes in my closet because I do and they suck and I’ve had most of them forever and I wish I could burn them all and start over (not to be too dramatic about it but for real I hate them all)…and there’s a really pretty model who looks nothing like me rocking a dress that probably won’t fit over my chest, well, then, I’m already on the “checkout” screen. The fun thing about credit cards is you get to pay them off later, when the bill comes and you nearly fall over dead at the amount you managed to spend on brunch and t-shirts and Postmates delivery and that cute necklace you just had to have.

Day Five of grieving is costing me a lot of money. I don’t think I’m doing this right.