I’m proud of myself for actually making a business card prior to meeting new people.
Who am I?
In less than two hours I’ll be driving out to meet a group of people whom I’ve never met. They are a social and networking group of working voice actors and people interested in voice acting.
As you might know, if you listen to my podcast, I am NOT a working voice actor. I am a lady who decided to do an experiment and talk out loud attached to a digital recorder and a collar mic about compulsive eating while walking and hiking. Yowsers, what an odd idea. How do I explain THAT to anyone who doesn’t understand?
In my college days I spent three years intensely studying drama and writing before I ultimately finished college with a degree in education. I was exposed to voice acting and loved it, because even then, I felt uncomfortable in my body. I have always loved telling stories and I have always loved portraying characters with my voice. I always WISHED for the bravery to pursue voice acting. It is one of those impossible dreams, like singing.
Here in Southern California, there are many studios and production companies. Also classes and master classes and improv classes and acting classes. Likewise a zillion people migrate here all of the time with a dream to enter the “business” in some way. Some of them are my friends.
Most waiters or waitresses here are actors or writers or directors.
I feel like I’m too old for such nonsense.
And yet, somewhere there is still a spark of interest and ‘what if?’ stirring.
I’ve been fairly successful talking about my compulsive eating issues, and I will continue with that. But once the food is no longer my master, once its hold is no longer the glue that holds my life together, nor the excuse of why I can’t even try, what then?
Who am I under it all?
Who am I to go to a meeting designed for folks who know their path. Who have had talent and training and who have actually booked a job or two? Who am I to dare to be something new?
Mark and I are going to ride a 50 mile bike race come Nov. That’s a different high than eating, or planning to eat. That’s riding. That’s climbing the hills with sweat and toil and flying down the other side, free as blazes while our hearts pump steady with the joy of life. I’ve done this before. I love the feeling, I love the training, and even though I’m not the fastest, the thinnest, or the youngest, I feel a part of that world.
So I have one thing at least under the food.
I also love to speak and create talks and classes and interact with live people. That’s a different thing than climbing hills alone and talking into a recorder, creating thoughts that you can edit. Speaking in person is risky and alive and things can easily go wrong. But I’ve done that before. I’ve survived that before. I’ve been a wonderful speaker and had the time of my life, several times over. Even with the fear of how my brain is now, my mouth is now and my attention is now, I feel a part of that world.
But to have another wish. A secret wish. A wish to try to pursue a long held dream. The dream I let go to follow teaching. I told myself I was practical to become a teacher. There were jobs there, and I supported myself since the day I was 18. I told myself I was grown up and mature. My friends went to LA and New York to try to be actors. I cried and waved good-bye. I visited and kept books of their clips. I clapped and cheered and wiped their tears. Some worked awhile. Many died. It was the time of aids and drugs and rock and roll. I retreated into safety. I was happy to be alive and have money.
But inside my heart broke not to try.
I had a normal life. A usual life. A life with many adventures. I left teaching and my home and made a new life in California.
But again, I didn’t try to do what I wanted.
I did what was safe and made money. I did that until I retired.
All the while I kept eating my pain or dieting thinking that thin would make me happy.
Today is the scariest day of my life.
I’m not waiting to be thin. I’m taking a risk. I’m taking my first step toward something that interests me, that isn’t sensible or wise or about making money.
Who am I under all of this fear and food obsession?
Maybe today I’ll start to find out.