Adventures du jour! (May 9, 2023)

The people who pick at scabs…”natural talents”…backstage self

Another one. GAHHHHHHHH. I have stuff to do. But here goes.

Reminding myself this morning that I am utterly, recklessly, relentlessly, brutally fearless about some things (well, if and when I let myself know them) and that I also take it for granted that everyone should be the same way. Tsch.

Other people have their own lives. They have other resources, other backgrounds, other skillsets, and other personalities. Too many of “me” in any given area is probably a bad idea. “We” are disruptive, especially to ourselves, and we don’t always know where to draw the line. We pick at scabs, endlessly.

I really need to just appreciate myself. Probably there’s something in there about how the ways I pushed myself in order to cope with fucked up shit as a kid or with my ex. I tend to take my strengths for granted, and I just assume that everyone *has* to be like me, because that’s normal, right? But it isn’t.

Not everyone has had to be ready for unasked for, soul-killing criticism without notice–not everyone has learned to thrive with it. Not everyone has had to anticipate others’ needs almost to the level of being a mind-reader. Not everyone was held responsible for reading the room and managing sixteen simultaneous conflicts while being expected to be the unnoticed nobody in the corner, or making of fool of themselves. Not everyone had to learn subtext as a survival language. It is a *luxury* not to have to know it. Not everyone has learned to treat every situation like a detective gathering clues in a murder mystery.–Not everyone has a parent whose love language was math and puns, and therefore not everyone automatically looks for ways to push their thoughts (and jokes, and explorations, and observations) to an extreme, just to find out where the logic, the humor, the reality breaks. Not everyone was expected to be able to both do everything perfectly the first time, and lashed out at when they showed off–not everyone knows how to make something look light and effortless and downplay their efforts. I am a “natural” at nothing. I have zero “natural talents.” Not even writing, holy shit no! I am endlessly curious and I hate to make the same mistake twice. The rest is this relentlessness, which I take for granted, because it is the most insulted, derided part of me. Other people are persistent, have willpower, are determined. Are hard workers. I am just stubborn, foolish, naive, obsessed.

I need to stop using myself for other people’s benefit, and stop hamstringing myself in service of my own. But then, of course, I’ll suddenly become “that nutty, obsessive bitch” instead of “a natural.” Because there are real-life, societal reasons why I act the way I do.

I am fortunate, as parts of me ooze out around the edges of my conscious control, to be so well connected to people who think those parts of me are fine, no big deal? Look, everyone’s different? What’s normal, really?

“But that’s what I like about you, De.”

It is humbling to be liked as you are, to have people prefer it. Like people watching your stage play, applauding politely, then sighing in relief as they walk around backstage.–I myself am exactly this way. So why it surprises me that others prefer the backstage me, I have no idea.

It occurs to me that I don’t let everyone go backstage.

The chairs are truly uncomfortable and they aren’t covered in velvet; there are dozens of layers of paint all over everything; all the diamonds are scratched and fake; the costumes–and there are *so* many of them–are only as authentic as I can afford them to be, given my budget and the exigencies of the stage. The blisters are still oozing, I fucking hate wearing makeup, and my feet hurt.

But damn if it isn’t nice to know some people are willing to look at the effort and compliment me not because it all seems so natural, but because they know the work that went into the performance.

Epic bedhead photo. This was the most amusing photo, but not the most epic hair. I looked like Helena Bonham Carter being evil until I pulled my hair back.

Midjourney image of removing makeup backstage. I love the way the hands are messed up in this one.

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