Hello my Dearest of Friends,
It's been almost four months since I've sat down to write to you all. And there's good reason for it. I had decided to take a break. There was no grand announcement, no sighing and wringing of hands...ok, maybe a little wringing, but it was just something I knew I needed. I had to take a step back and have a long, hard look at my life...by myself.
The one thing about being so public is that you are always swayed by the opinions of everyone around you. I know that everyone means well and wants the best for me. But earning less than minimum wage for working on a couple of super famous tv shows isn't really what's best for me. Neither was killing myself getting to auditions, and singing without being able to actually connect. So I finally found a (somewhat regular) job, but not one that anyone expected me to find.
I've been working at Trader Joe's for the last three months and couldn't be happier. I'm surrounded by people who are genuinely kind, who will help without a second thought. It's just always yes there. We work hard, we get our jobs done, and we try to have a good time doing it. I haven't felt like this, more like myself, since Goog's death.
To be surrounded by such caring and compassionate people has reminded me that I am not the hardened New Yorker that I was turning into; that Midwestern sweetness is still a part of me. And it's finally brought me around. I'm smiling more. I've been slowly losing weight, and working on a healthier way of life. I've been getting out of the house. I've gone out on dates with a few different guys. Some good. Some bad. But at least I'm trying. My confidence is slowly returning. I can genuinely say I'm happy. And that is terrifying.
The last time I was this happy, I was in West Virginia singing another South Pacific, surrounded by the same type of people that now surround me in TJ's; caring, supportive, and kind. The day I finished that contract, my entire life changed. Goog was gone and I was left looking at this pile of smoldering rubble that was supposed to somehow resemble my heart. Losing one of your closest friends at that young an age just isn't supposed to happen. It makes you realize that life is truly too short and it can be taken from us at any moment. And that is scary as fuck.
So I retreated. I stopped talking and posting about what was going on. I had to figure out what was most important to me in my life. And that has always been balance; finding that sweet spot where happiness exists without being dependent on other things or other people, being able to work hard and achieving some kind of small goal whether that's putting up an entire shelving unit full of tangerines quickly and beautifully, or nailing an audition for a theater that I truly wanted to work with.
And I have.
(You should have seen the tangerines last night. They were perfection.)