Shortly after in 3rd grade I was told that I was not going to be in the gifted program, because I talked too much. I was told that in the program, you could do whatever you wanted to, and got a zillion field trips… it broke my heart.
That moment became something that defined me, that has shaped my life in so many ways.
That’s when I became shy. I was afraid of talking too much. I was afraid that my mouth would screw me over, to the point, of no-return.
I guess that would make it, my first, real, original fear.
You see, I’ve always been fearless. Before I could properly walk, my Dad tells me, I was climbing and subsequently swinging from the cupboards in our kitchen. At 4 years old, I broke my neck, and heights… sort of became a problem. But I could deal, I just got a little vertigo, and then, I’d cope. Didn’t stop me from jumping off of our roof all the time, and at the neighbor’s house we’d jump out of the 2nd story window, onto a tramp at basement level.
At around 6, during a particularly high-stakes game of hide-and-go-seek, I resorted to hiding in the dryer, and my little sister started the dryer, and ran off. Claustrophobia, ensued after I had to kick out the door of the dryer to get out, and avoid getting more bruised and hot than bearable. But that only lead to some slight anxiety, when I feel trapped. Most people are anxious when trapped, it’s not a debilitating fear, and it didn’t stop me from napping in our linen closet on the shelves, in a less than 1×1 foot space.
After an encounter with a teenage boy at the not-at-all-ripe age of 3 or 4, my comfort in regards to anything of sexual nature was damaged.
At 10, as a renowned tomboy who could kick ass at any sport, and literally kick anyone’s ass, I lost my guy friends because girls became “icky” and were too weak suddenly to play with. Which lead to the ultimate distrust of the opposite gender, and consequently most people. (You have to realize, these were guys I had hung out with since I was 4, and had spent the majority of my life hanging out with them, who suddenly dropped me, due to what was under my shorts.)
At 7, when I wanted to be a ballerina, and my dad finally took me to sign up for a dance class, and we left without me being in a class because it was so goddamn expensive. I resorted to my much more achievable dream of being a rock star, and wrote a million songs, only to be told that my gift was in song-writing and not singing.
I watched movies, lots of inappropriately adult movies that a girl as impressionable as me, and willing should not have been exposed to. Which led me to confessing my love of our next-door neighbor Ben, at the age of 8, who I so did not actually. Which led us to kissing a lot because that’s what people in love in the movies did.
I determined that when I grow up I was going to own a Siberian Tiger when I grew up after a trip to the zoo at 4, when I learned that siber-toothed tigers had been extinct for a long time. (My first choice of a pet, prior.)
My dream of becoming a clothing designer was dashed when my best friend at 12 Nicole, was better at sketching designs.
My dream of being a vampire, also was dashed when I reached 13, and still had no evidence that any real vampires had ever been alive, ever.
My dream of being a stuntman, is still alive, but I know that it would freak out my Dad, considering how scared he is of me using my tax return money to buy a motorcycle.
A job as an Art Director, Casting Director, or Pyrotechnic Technician is incredibly hard to come by. In Filmstudies/Filmmaking, I quickly learned that being the director, was not exactly where I belonged… or at least not when my scaredy-cat friends refused to get behind the camera, and I had to be the talent in every movie we made, as well as direct.
After every single play I’ve been in, (including 2 different versions of A Christmas Carol, oddly enough when I hate Christmas, plus rehearsals for a Christmas Play during Halloween is lame) I’ve always been inconsolably depressed, after closing night. Not only because being on stage is exhilarating and fulfilling, but because I always miss the weird in-jokes that happen during a production while waiting in the wings. As well as the queer mischievous nature that comes while working in a completely empty theater that may or may not be haunted.
Being an Actor was my older sister’s dream. Being a singer was my younger sister’s dream. Being an artist, writer, was supposed to be my dream.
It is in ways. I will always love writing, and creating art… but it is a lonely, solitary business.
All of the things above, as well as my weirdo ability to completely memorize a movie after seeing it 2x, are factors in why I want to desperately be an actor.
Being an actor, combines so many of the things that I love in this world.
I’m a dreamer. I do want to try everything out in this world. A production, it’s magical, whether it’s film or stage, you get to create something breathtaking with weird milk-water rain, clever camera angles, waving a thing of sheet metal to create thunder and lightening. You get to tell stories (which if the above doesn’t tell you about my love of stories, I don’t know what does). You get to show real, raw truth by deceit, illusion, strings and pulleys.
I can’t say there’s anything that tells more about human nature, than people pretending to be living lives, that they don’t live, loving people they don’t love in that way, pretending to be people who they aren’t. Trying to resolve a neat little problem in 3 acts or less, all while trying to possibly fit it under an umbrella overlying theme about what it means to be human.
I love memorizing lines, I love pretending to be someone and experiencing things that I’ll probably never experience in my real life. I love that I get the chance to go into the woods to escape my mother (who isn’t actually my mother) who locked me away in a tower, and meet my brother who’s trying to help his wife conceive a child by finding a cow white as milk, a cape as red as blood, hair as yellow as corn,and a slipper as pure as gold.
It’s the stuff that dreams are made of. It’s what my dreams are made of.
I realized this last semester when I was working 50 hours a week, signed up for 18 credit hours, and still wanted to audition for my school’s production of a space-age version of Romeo and Juliet (I was hoping for the part of Mercutio, because he’s the only one I liked.), and was heartbroken when I was too busy to do it.
I miss acting. Like writing, it’s an outlet, it’s a dream, and just a little unrealistic. But good things happen. It makes me happy, no matter what little parts I get. I want to do it. Plus, I seem to be pretty good at it.
I haven’t told anyone, the extent of how much I want to strike out in California and join a wonderful community of artists, and creative types… but right now, I don’t see many other options in my dream future. For someone who has a pretty hard times limiting their options. That’s a pretty freaking big deal.