I should be writing. Instead, my mind is spinning, because tomorrow (as you might already know if you follow me on Twitter or FB) I will be hearing two important bits of news that will alter the course of my life forever. No, seriously. That sounds like hyperbole, but it’s really not. I may or may not get the perfect apartment, which means I may or may not be staying with a friend next month. AND I may or may not get into the NHMC Writers Program, which means I may or may not be off to LA to begin my screenwriting career. How I’ll sleep tonight, I don’t know.
Then again, who am I kidding. I never sleep.
The past two days have been really difficult for me in that I’ve learned what friends and family really think of what I’m trying to do with this whole freelance writing business. For the most part, I have oodles of love and support, and I am so grateful. But there is also a lot of (well-meaning) discouragement coming from some unexpected places. It hurts me that some people think what I’m doing with myself is a waste of time and that it won’t work. I have had a LOT of people help me in a LOT of aspects of my life over the past couple of months, and I’m more grateful than I can possibly say. However, what matters to me more than any monetary or otherwise physical support is that they respect what I’m trying to do. I am not a slacker. I am not lazy. I am not going about my life without planning ahead. I don’t mind living with roommates. I don’t care that I don’t have a 401K. I’ve gone without health insurance for most of my life. I don’t have children or a spouse to take care of.
So if not now, when?
When I think about my parents, one of the greatest lessons I took from them is that putting what you want or need aside in favor of doing what people expect of you will lead to more sadness and pain than you can shake a stick at. Of course there will be moments of happiness. There are always opportunities for happiness even in the midst of deepest despair. But with my parents, there was always an underlying (sometimes very overt) layer of sadness and regret in everything they did, and I think a lot of it had to do with each of them at key moments in their lives choosing what society told them was the “right” decision to make, as opposed to doing what was right for them.
Meanwhile, they always encouraged me to follow my heart. Practically, of course, but unwaveringly. I think they both, in their own way, were trying to warn me away from the mistakes they made. And I’m listening. I’ve made a lot of mistakes since college, financially and otherwise, and I’ve gotten to a place now where I’ve set a definite course – the course on which I want to spend the rest of my life – and all I ask is that people respect that choice. They don’t have to like it, or understand it. They don’t have to help me if they can’t.
But they shouldn’t hurt me either.
And with all that rambling in mind, I present Teresa’s “Watching the Wheels” Playlist. Enjoy.
WATCHING THE WHEELS (John Lennon)
The Tale As Old As Time isn’t Beauty & the Beast. It’s people not understanding why money, or security, or success according to a societal standard doesn’t matter in the same way to everyone. Here’s John Lennon’s take on the matter. Amazing how a song written by an English dude before I was born expresses what I’m feeling better than I can right now.
GIRL ANACHRONISM (The Dresden Dolls)
They’ll say, “Just let her crash and burn, she’ll learn. The attention just encourages her.”
I don’t necessarily believe there is a cure for this, so I might join your century but only as a doubtful guest.
Incidentally, I was born via cesarean. And I was an accident…unless my parents were planning on getting pregnant in their 40s.
RAISE YOUR GLASS (Pink)
The lead-in to the chorus is a little wonky (“Why so serious?” “Just get dancey?”) But I’m a sucker for: So, raise your glass if you are wrong in all the right ways.
And I always was too school for cool.
EXTRAORDINARY MACHINE (Fiona Apple)
I’ve been in love with this song since the bootleg of Fiona’s third album. And I’m sorry, but I like the production on the bootleg version better than what ended up on the finished album, so that’s what you’re getting.
I seem to you to seek a new disaster every day/You deem me due to clean my view and be at peace and lay/I mean to prove I mean to move in my own way and say I’ve been getting along for long before you came into the play.
I am the baby of the family it happens, so, everybody cares and wears the sheep’s clothes while they chaperone/Curious, you’re looking down your nose at me while you appease/courteous to try and help, but let me set your mind at ease…
NO LOVE (Eminem, featuring Lil’ Wayne)
Many of you already know I’ve been obsessed with this song lately. Eminem’s half of the song KILLS me.