Friday, March 23, 2012

No One Fights Alone

Today, just as I was feeling low, I received two things in the mail:  something from my big brother and a letter from a good friend of mine.  I can't give you all the details of the letter from the good friend but I can tell you the gist.  She's someone I knew in high school and someone I also knew in college and she wrote me a letter out of the blue that was heartfelt and honest and for that I thank her immensely.  Basically she wrote about how she's going through some rough patches and how my blog and photographs and Facebook posts have helped her get through some of those rough patches.  I want to tell her how grateful I am that I could do that for her.  I want to tell her how I want to do that for everyone.  I want to tell her how her letter made me cry because I felt she understood completely.  She told me how vibrantly beautiful my spirit is and how amazing I am and I want to tell her how much I want to hug her for that.  How much I want to hug her for taking the time to write me such a beautiful letter.  So to this amazing young woman who wrote me this letter, you know who you are, I want to say you are amazing and you can do anything you set your heart to.  You have a fighting spirit and nothing can break it.  Believe in yourself and all that you want in your beautiful heart's desires is possible.  You are precious and unique.  Believe that.  And thank you, my sweet friend.

As for my big brother, what can I say?  He's got a beautiful, caring soul that has always been there for me.  He gave me one of those cancer bracelets that states, "No One Fights Alone!" on it's black band.  It may be for cancer but as my brother stated so wonderfully, "no one fights alone is applicable anywhere."  And he is right.  I feel alone so often it hurts like a festering stab wound.  And I know I'm not alone but I can't help feeling it most of the time.  But I now wear this bracelet always, never taking it off, so that I will always be reminded that I am not alone in this fight.  I love you, my big brother.  More than you will ever know.  He also wrote a beautiful poem to go with it that made me cry my eyes out and I share it with you:

In life we find seas that are so rarely calm
Yet our yearning for them to be so never lets it feel the norm
Then the skies darken
What had seemed unbearable is now deemed a warm blanket
Fate strikes and we are thrown against our will
We face the unknown, the unintended not ready and unprepared

The weight seems so great, these shoulders so slender
Strength comes in knowing no weight is carried alone
Reach out your hand to find another awaiting your grasp
As fears threaten and taken on the corporeal
We will lend our voice to cry out against the menace
Push at will, with all that can be mustered

I shall rise again, for I am
When all becomes dim, I shall remember
I done the armor the knows no blemish
I will suffer no defeat
I am not alone
No one fights alone.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Four Year Burniversary

Yesterday was my four year burn anniversary and it was a tough day.  I hate that it happened on such a carefree holiday.  While everyone else is out having fun wearing funky green apparel and drinking green beer and other green liquors, I'm burdened with thoughts of me in a near death accident and in a coma in the hospital.  I'm complicated with thoughts of how that day changed my life forever and what I lost with it as well as what I have gained.  I try to see it as a day I survived and a day that made me a survivor but those are only fleeting moments.  It's hard to see myself as a survivor sometimes cause it's not like I took part in my own survival.  My survival is attributed to the paramedics and the doctors and nurses who kept me alive.  The only thing I've done is NOT done what is often on my mind.

I don't understand how this can be God's plan for me.  What am I supposed to do with my life now?  My life and career was based some on my appearance that I don't see a way back there with the scars that now  mangle my body.  I know there are other things that I can do with my life, like other ways to inspire and touch people but I wanted to do that with entertainment.  I wanted to show all those small town actors with no connections like me that they can do whatever they desired in their hearts because I was able to do it.  I was able to make my way through the big time city of New York, through the thousands of auditions and casting couches, through the low wage jobs of waitressing and bartending, through the days of wondering if I'll be able to eat or pay the rent and bills and not give up; make it to the Broadway stage or the silver screen and ultimately win a Tony and/or an Oscar for my talent and work.  To become the next Meryl Streep and have kids with big dreams in their hearts look at me and think what I think of my acting idols - if she can make it with hard work, so can I.  That's how I wanted to touch and inspire people.  But I'm afraid my chance of that has been taken from me and now I'm left to find some way else to do so.  And that would be fine, if the other wasn't what my heart desired so strongly.  My heart is broken and I don't know how to mend it without having acting and singing in my life.

A very dear friend of mine suggested that I box up what I can of stuff that reminds me of my life before the accident and send it to her because they only bring me pain.  At first I was hesitant cause it's hard to let go but I think it's time.  She said she wouldn't destroy anything or even look in the box.  She would just keep it for me till that pain had subsided and my anger relieved.  But I told her I want her to look at what's inside so that somehow that life I led before the accident can be released.  I'm afraid that if it remains boxed up, my pain and anger will remain in that box.  And that's not what I want.  I want to be free of my pain and anger.  I want it to be released into the universe like doves from their cages on a wedding day and when I'm ready to have it back it won't be like reopening a wound.  She's the type of person who has healing words and a healing spirit about her and I feel like her looking at what will be inside that box will have a healing effect on me.     

I do want to thank my incredible family and rockin' friends who have given me love, friendship and support throughout all of this.  I have been very blessed in that sense and I am eternally grateful for all that you have done and continue to do for me.  I don't know where I'd be if it weren't for all of you.  I love you all so dearly and with all my heart.  

Monday, March 12, 2012

Control of the Authorship of My Own Destiny

"You must have control of the authorship of your own destiny.  The pen that writes your life story must be held in your own hand."  ~Irene C. Kassorla

I don't feel like I have any kind of authorship of my own destiny.  I feel like that left me when the accident happened, or maybe even a short while before that.  It feels as though my destiny is in the hands of other people like my acting manager, casting directors, my surgeon, even my insurance.  It doesn't feel like I have any control at all and that's a horrible feeling for we should all have control of the authorship of our own destiny's.

For me I feel like my career is hanging in the balance of many people's hands.  On one hand there is my surgeon's hands which deal with my reconstruction...literally.  He is dealing with the battle to reconstruct me in the best way he can.  Then there's the issue of my acting manager who has to deal with trying to find ways to get me back into the acting world with my scars, if that's even possible.  And then on top of that, I have to deal with my insurance: what it allows me to do with regards to surgeries, hospital stays, prescriptions, and medical supplies.  So far my insurance has not given me any problems....yet.  So, I'm grateful for that.  But where do I come in with control of the authorship of my own destiny?  I feel like it's all out of my hands right now.  And that frightens me terribly.

However, the pen that writes my life story is in my own hand and for that I am also grateful.  I am able to tell you first hand what I am feeling, what I am going through in mind, body and spirit.  Maybe one day I will write my story into a book.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Anger and Pain

"Where there is anger, there is always pain underneath."  ~Eckhart Tolle

This couldn't speak more true.  Many of you may think me an angry person but I'm really not.  I never was.  But I will admit, I am angry a lot of the time but it's only been since my accident and I have all the reason in the world to be angry.  Do you honestly blame me?  Something absolutely terrible happened to me and so much was lost because of it.  I mean, fire burned away my flesh and almost killed me!  Imagine being on fire and almost dying because of the severity of it, losing your dreams and your body along with it and then tell me you wouldn't be angry.  But understand that underneath that anger, there is a great amount of pain driving it.  I have so much pain, both physically and emotionally you can't even imagine.  So please understand, if I speak out in anger, I'm  ultimately speaking out in pain.