Thursday, April 14, 2011

Trying to Figure It Out

I've been going through a ridiculous phase of depression, anxiety, and/or panic. My body has been in constant flux. I've been nauseous. I've been confused. I've been static. I've been banging my head on the wall. With a nice conversation over some sand papering of neutral masks with my buddy Alex tonight, I finally was able to set up a visual description of what has been bothering me for a week and years.
Let me try to write a description of this image I have. That sounds stupid. This isn't an answer to anything. I'm actually opening it up for description. It's how I feel right now.
I feel the life of an artist is that of a circle. More specifically a roller coaster that just spins in a circle at a pretty rapid pace. Everything we work on has a beginning and an end, then we begin, then it ends, then we begin something else, then that ends, and so on and so on. Actors who are successful go round and round with their projects but it starts as a horizontal coaster, just a few feet off the ground, it gets higher, then vertical, then higher, until you can see it off the interstate as you're approaching the amusement park and that's the ride you want to get on. I almost see the roller coaster's rising as levels on a video game. You beat that guy you get to level 2, then to level 3, and once you get to level 4, you can never go below that level if you should die. Once you get to level 10, you do anything you can not to die because you'd go all the way back to level 4.
Well here's the situation I feel I'm in. My roller coaster consists of one loop and a whole bunch of smaller loops that extend from that big loop. My car has been going around that main loop for years and years. That's my level 1 loop. It's only a few feet off the ground. I've been on that loop for a loooong time. I have been on many outside loops in the past 16 years which include, but not limited to: being on tour, living in NYC, girlfriends, playing guitar in concert, doing photography, reading, writing, singing, producing, AEA, AFTRA, countless classes, directing, choral conducting, sing doo wop, theory, projects, movies, tv shows, books, physical training, working with kids, bartending, meeting people, and many other things that have occupied my days, months, and years. The thing that pisses me off is that none of my outside loops have exceeded level 4 and beyond. As written in my previous entry, what I've noticed is that my mistakes and minimal drive to follow through with things has kept me from raising the levels on any of them. I go round and round on one of them and eventually get shot back to the Level 1 main loop that by now, feels like a chaffed ass on a hot summer day.
My frustration is my inability to really strengthen any of my specifics. That's not exactly what my frustration is, it's the fact that I hold every possible thing I need to succeed in doing that but somehow find a way not to. Is it the fear of success? Do I believe I should be completely happy? Do I fear growing older? Do I sabotage myself? Do I have too many interests and can't focus on just one? Am I scared to fail? Why do I continuously think that it will get done one day and not believe and trust that today could be the day? That last question stings me. I procrastinate better than anyone I know, almost to the point that I hijack my progress, and ultimately, the career I could have had.
I'm amazing when I have a deadline. I might just hire someone to be a full time professor and life coach and punish me when I don't follow through. Actually, that sounds like a dominatrix and that's for something totally different.
I'm sick of watching people pass me up and succeed while I stay one step behind for whatever reason I can come up with. It's my fault. I keep that car on the level 1 loop and it goes around and around and it's starting to make me very sick. I strive for stimulus and a new loop, and then I avoid it or ruin it. It's not every day when you can map out the wrongdoings of your life. Then turn around and get scared that you've seen a lot of years pass by and you didn't hop on for the ride. Everybody says that 35 isn't old, but lately I've been feeling just a tad bit slower on trusting the fact that everything is going to work out the way it should be. What is that "should be"? I don't know.

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