DISCLAIMER: I want to make it clear that 100% of everything I write about I take very seriously. All this New Age hippie hoopla saved my life. I love it and want to share it with as many people as I can. But my brain is also wired to find the funny in any situation. As a comedian sarcasm and cynicism just run in my blood.
So who am I and why should you read this? I am an actress, writer, and comedian who has struggled with following my dreams and staying positive in the process. Basically, I’m a 34 year old starving artist. Or as I like to tell casting, age range 28-32… which still doesn’t change the fact that I have yet to book a real TV gig. I have to admit I thought I’d be farther along by now. There have been small successes like call backs for national commercials, bookings on indie films, and my pilot making it to the Semi-finals in the CWA Script Competition. Enough to know I don’t completely suck but not enough to keep me from feeling the flood of embarrassment when someone asks me, “What have I seen you in?” It’s easy to become a cynic, especially here in Los Angeles, where it seems that anyone pursuing their creative dreams ends up stuck serving, bartending, or uber-ing drunk 22 year olds.
So how did I escape that destructive cynicism? Well, I was lucky enough to have my life completely shattered five years ago. In the matter of one month my fiance and I broke up, I was homeless, his dog killed my cat, and to top it all off I got into two car accidents. Everything my type A personality thought I knew and had perfectly planned out… gone. But I’ve been told it usually takes a major crisis to get us dummies to change. If we’re only mildly unhappy we usually just deal with it. But this was so traumatic I had to act. I needed to find somewhere to live for one, because as enticing as joining our beloved homeless community is, I didn’t think I could deal with all of those people talking to themselves out loud… I do that enough myself. I also got into therapy and, most importantly, discovered spirituality.
I was raised Roman Catholic, so I already knew RELIGION. To me this is very different than spirituality. I knew rules. I prayed to God, but I don’t think I ever EXPERIENCED God. Or call it the Universe if the word God makes you uncomfortable. I want you to know that I will NEVER claim that my ideas are the only right way to think. I will never preach to you. Whenever I see those people on street corners shoving small Bibles at people and screaming, “Find Jesus or you’re going to HELL!!!” I want to slap them across the face and tell them, “You’re doing it all wrong! This doesn’t entice people to join you. It pushes them away faster than a girl telling a guy she wants to be exclusive after the first date! And from personally experience, that DOES NOT WORK!!!!”
My life changed, in the midst of crisis, when a friend dragged me to see Marianne Williamson at The Saban Theater. She teaches from a book called “A Course in Miracles.” And just like that I was hooked into this new way of thinking and doing. I wanted more and have now dedicated much of my time exploring books, meditation, yoga, and anything else that may help me find enlightenment. This blog will serve as an account of things I try and how I either succeed or fail to integrate them into my daily life. Hopefully it will give you ideas of new practices to try, and let you know it’s OK to fail or make a fool of yourself, because I do ALL THE TIME.
There are so many things I want to share and explore on this blog. It felt fitting to start off with one of my favorites: Deepak Chopra and Oprah’s 21 Day Meditation Challenge. They have so many great 21 day programs focusing on health, relationships, and my personal favorite, desire and destiny. The great thing about these is that they are FREE. Yes, you read me right, FREE. Just sign up at chopracentermeditation.com and you will get daily meditations sent to your email, or you can choose to download their also free app. At the end of the challenge you can buy the whole 21 day mediation for $39.99 so you can access them at any time. And if you’re complaining about spending $40 on your mental health then maybe re-examine all those times you spent $40 on candy crush… or my new guilty pleasure, Yo Kai Watch Wibble Wobble. Or just wait til they start up the next 21 day challenge and do that one for free. They start every three months or so.
I have purchased their 21 day mediation “Desire and Destiny”and sat down this morning to start again on day 1, which so happened to be titled “Who Am I?” “This is the perfect first blog!” I thought to myself. I can tell you who I am while you also examine who you are. See, and you thought I was just a complete narcissist who wanted to drone on and on about myself like a Kardashian on Snapchat. While I sat in my super comfy papasan chair, my spot of choice for mediation, I went inside and thought about who I am and what I want to do. I’ve wanted to write since I was in first grade and acting soon followed. I know I’m an artist even if I don’t see those results yet because it’s what drives me each and every day. I also have become obsessed with self help books, meditation, different types of yoga and energy purging, hypnosis, the list goes on. But I don’t look or act like a super spiritual guru with beads or dreadlocks or a smooth voice and eyes that look into your soul. In reality I’m loud, sarcastic, and probably say fuck way too often. I’ll do anything to make someone laugh. And it occurred to me, “Why not bring all this spiritual crap that I love so much to the average person? In a way that they can relate to, even laugh at, so it’s not so scary and pretentious? And hey, if I can also find a way to turn this into my full time job instead of waiting tables how AMAZING would that be?” So that’s what I’m going to (humbly) attempt to do. And hopefully I can help you dig deeper into the question “Who Am I?” today, too.
So take a moment and look inside. What do you see? Don’t judge it. There’s no right or wrong answer. Maybe who you are right this second is a lazy sloth who just wants to watch “Big Brother” all day. I’m not judging, I’ve literally done this. But go past that. Go to your core. Go to what you most loved as a child. What makes your heart beat faster? Energizes you? Is there a way you can integrate one of those things into your day today? And if you can’t pinpoint any one thing right now, that’s OK. Just ask the question. Put it out there then look for small signs or answers throughout the day. Just know the answer will come and leave it alone. And in the meantime flip on “Big Brother.” You never know, maybe you’re called to compete on next season. Stranger things have happened. Have a great day!
And so it is.