I am a bit of a hypocrite, I realize that now. It’s too easy for us to keep striving so hard for the dream that we don’t see what is in front of us, you know this. It’s too easy for me to berate my curly haired, green eyed husband for not appreciating what he has, and to focus so hard on what I think he’s missing, that I miss things myself.
There’s one thing you need to know about my husband, side from the fact that he’s American, born in Colorado, a 35 year old going on 16, part-time powerlifter and music student at the Musicians’ Institute; he’s got it all figured out. And me, after knowing him for 10 years, and being married nearly 7, I’m only just realizing this. It’s not taken much – just a massive upheaval!
419 days ago I emigrated to Colorado.
197 days ago we moved to LA.
14 days ago I quit my job.
Here I am; unemployed in a foreign country suddenly living the dream. It’s really true. I just needed some space in my head to realize this…
- When Jon and I first met, here, in Hollywood, we bonded over tequila and a shared knowledge that we would live to work, not work to live. In all our time together he’s the one who has stuck by that. By being downright selfish and stubborn and letting me do all the hard work. Well, that’s how it sometimes looks to outsiders, and that’s how it’s seemed to me when I’ve come home from another 8 hour day doing something I kind of enjoy but isn’t really what I want to do. Sitting around playing guitar all day doesn’t pay the bills.
- I don’t like it here. That’s the truth. There’s nearly as many people in one square mile of Hollywood as there were in my entire home town. I’ve swapped the soft sweeping river for the hard concrete freeway, a scattering of sheep for a smattering of the homeless, birds flying by to helicopters overhead…all the damn time. Yet, hello, I live in LA! I am never going to have a better opportunity to create something and try to leave my mark than I am right now and I will be a utter fool to let that slip past me.
- I am the same weight and size of clothes that I was 15 years ago! I put it down to my metabolism coz I sure as hell don’t exercise enough but really it’s because I NEVER STOP (or drink, or do drugs, or eat processed food but never mind). In the UK I’d work full time, leave that job, go to a evening job in a theatre and some amateur dramatics on the side; every bloody day! I move to LA, work a 40 hour week in a retail job where I’m clocking over 8 fitbit miles a shift and then running off to theatres and yoga and whatever else and then wondering why I’m so tired all the time.
Suddenly I realized why it was never enough for Jon to just do ‘some job’ to make a bit of money. Why he would never settle. I started to live that. I’d get anxious and had difficulty breathing from the chest pain. We need the money though, rent here is ridiculous. If I don’t work how can we live? I’d lose my benefits. It’s only for another year, can’t I see it through…?
I quit that job. Shit!
I feel like I’m in that moment when the tide goes out and sucks all the sand up around your feet – you can feel the pressure mounting. I’m still waiting for the tidal wave of panic to break over my head and drag me down to the depths of despair. The waves keep crashing early though and there’s just a calm lapping at my feet.
So now I have to stop being a hypocrite. I need to stop entirely. Take stock. I’ve wasted so much energy on jobs I don’t really care about, reaching unnecessary goals and doing nothing to nurture myself. Meanwhile my husband grows up around me; nourished by success at school, confident and focused. The secret has been there the whole time. Discipline. I need it. I must show it. Stop feeling sorry for myself and waiting for something to happen (or on the flip side, getting so caught up and trying to push for something to happen when things are just going to run their course). We got here didn’t we? He’s starting to live his dream because he was dedicated, unfaltering; nothing else would do. I am so lucky – that time playing guitar could have been squandered on beer, drugs, video games, gambling. He plays to his own tune; time for me to write mine.
I find I talk to myself a lot these days – telling myself off for procrastinating, for giving up on things before I start them. I’m testing myself by trying to limit my sugar intake (I’m an all or nothing kinda girl); we have to make things last now we’ve got no income, and it’s working. Who in their right mind would have the chance at taking their dream and just turn the other way? Not me. Apparently.
So here’s the plan…
- Learn some discipline.
- Believe in myself.
- Trust my voice, and my stories.
- Learn to be (at least a little bit) selfish.
- Appreciate…all of it.