What Fuels Me? Besides Starbucks, you mean…

{the brilliant Ann Noble and moi in And Neither Have I Wings to Fly}

What fuels me. It’s this weeks prompt from Just Be Enough. You know, my other site I’m trying to get you all to join up with? Well, not mine per se, but a whole bunch of amazing chicks and me.

So. What fuels me. Wow. I thought a lot about this one. It’s changed so much over the last five years. Ten years. When I was sick what fueled me was perfection. To be perfect. Perfection was this unattainable goal. Perfect control. Perfect looks. Perfection. Of course to me perfection was to be the thinnest. A stay in the ED ward did nothing but teach me a new standard of thinness. I still remember a young woman so thin she could fold in half on a metal folding chair and have room to spare. I envied that room. I was too big, too blubbery. I was not perfect.

I was sick.

Once I began healing from that what fueled me was vanity. I admit it. I was – oh who are we kidding I still am a bit- vain. Being an actress in LA is a constant state of crippling insecurity and overblown vanity. I embodied both of those. Perfectly. You either are the end all be all or you are crappola. There is no inbetween. When I was working a lot…I was awesome. When I wasn’t; I was shite. Believe me when I tell you I had exactly as much success as I allowed myself. I never pushed too hard or took too many risks. Just so I wouldn’t fail.

The longer I am away from Los Angeles, the clearer I am about the mindset I had while there. Not everyone is like that,mind you, I still love and miss my home sweet home. But this path, a path I never would have chosen for myself, has forced me to grow in some uncomfortable ways. It’s not been an easy journey by a long shot. It rocked me to the core, turning everything I believed in, everything I thought I wanted on it’s ear. I can now say that  *gulp* I am happier for it.

That still leaves me the unanswered question of what fuels me? The obvious and most important answer is my children. I still can’t grasp that I have children. Clearly the man upstairs has more faith in me than I have in myself! Every day I gain more faith though. With each baby smile, with each hilarious comment from The Boss I gain strength. The next answer would of course be my husband. A man so delightfully delusional he thinks I am hotter than Penelope Cruz. Bless him.

But we women know that one great struggle of ours-one we have grappled with since we figured out boys were cute, is not to lose ourselves. It was hard in 8th grade and it’s hard now. Not necessarily lost in a man, but lost in our children, our families, our careers. Just absorbed. Since we moved I was left with no identity but Zach’s wife and Max’s mom. I was totally lost. Before the move I was ME. Yeah, I was CAPLOCK ME.

Youknow the tale…a friend suggested blogging and now, 2.5 years and another baby later I finally feel like me. Not quite caplock me. But me. Still, I am puzzling over what fuels me.

Beauty? Not personal beauty but making thing beautiful; painting and redoing things.

Acting? Not so much right now. There was a time when I thought I would die if I didn’t act. I know now I can live without it, but I hope…no I WILL get back to it.

Starbucks? Definitely. But that’s not really what this is about.

I look back on my life (cue the Lifetime Movie overplayed dramatic music) and I realize that in some form or another I’ve always been creative. When I can’t act, I find writing. I find furniture…I learn how to use power tools. My Road Theatre Company friends would laugh at this, as I was always useless at set builds and strikes. Now, get outta my way! I can build that wall, paint that table and when we’re done break it down in record time.

I am still figuring out who I am now. Living here. With my in laws, my wonderful husband and my amazing boys. But I do know one thing: I am creative.

I am fueled by creativity. And like me, creativity is, in it’s essence changeable.

What are you fueled by?

9 thoughts on “What Fuels Me? Besides Starbucks, you mean…

  1. I really love the idea that your fuel is creativity itself, in all its possible and different forms. It gives you so much room to explore and find different things that make you happy!

  2. Pingback: What drives me? « Corey J Feldman

  3. Great post my friend. One I’m definitely gonna have to think about to answer correctly. I could answer it for Jere, because acting/performing is truly all that fuels him. But that has never been my whole fuel. I only occcasionally miss it, and sometiems wonder if I’ve forgotten HOW to act. But, thanks for giving me some food for thought. Oh, and I’m REALLLY glad you got away from L.A. and the desire for unattainable perfection and tearing yourself down. You are truly a beautiful, strong and amazing person and I’m glad you’re starting to recognize that outside of the crappy world of actors in L.A.

  4. I am struggling with this right now… At some point after college (maybe even before!) I lost sight of all of my creative interests. I got stuck on a career path that while enjoyable, never really spoke to me on a level deeper than “job.” And now I’m almost 40 and realizing that I really want to do something in writing and design. Thank god for blogging (which is what actually sparked this epiphany). I’ve learned so much about myself and what I can do (what I never *thought* I could do) and I know I can be more. Now to just DO it right? Why didn’t I figure this out before I had kids and a mortgage? Sigh. But I love this post – it’s true that you can always channel creative energy into other outlets.

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