Right Now.

main-qimg-4cd9d0abdd61a3f86eb8db248571686d-cRight now. This very second. Someone is thinking of you, grateful for you – just as you are. Now take a deep breath and let that truth wash over you.

I recently satiated on one of my favorite scenes in one of my favorite movies (next to Shawshank, Almost Famous, Postcards From the Edge).

No matter how many times I watch these lines come to life, it ignites that part of me I sometimes forget exists:

“Look, in my opinion, the best thing you can do is find a person who loves you for exactly Good mood, bad mood, ugly, pretty, handsome, what have you — the right person is still going to think the sun shines out your ass”  – Juno (screenplay by Diablo Cody)

Hard to believe – what with my being a professional pole swinger in the 80’s and all – but when it comes to fathers – I got nothing. Nada. Bupkis. It used to really piss me off, but I’m good now.

Spend enough time in the therapy chair and even hard-core narcissists get weary of cliché.

Somewhere in the cigarette smoke-filled milieu of graduating the stripper scene in my twenties and navigating my thirties with the moxie only a born salesman can attain, I pierced the Daddy Issues umbrella. It was enough to move on from being a victim of my mother’s poor choices, to my own mid-life conundrums.  I’ve been a walking lesson to myself for decades now without any help from the family fallback card.

Therapy should come with a hole-punch card.

Welcome to treatment! Ex-stripper? Daddy issues? Self-esteem in the shitter? Punch. Punch. Punch. Only two more and your next issue is free!

How cool would it be if we could all take a pill and wake up one day, look in the mirror and see what our loved ones see. We’d all wake up where our real life bleeds over from our dreams. The fantasy life we spend so much time wishing ourselves different from who we are would be reality. We’d have that perfect body, hair, skin, waist size, career, bank account, family, spouse… whatever.

Know what’s perfect? The knowledge that nothing is. The most beautiful part of being human is knowing that we are.

And human beings are flawed. We make mistakes, fall on our asses, throw people under the bus, avoid personal responsibility, live in denial, project our issues, betray trust, and break rules.

And that’s just with the people we love.

But not all hope is lost, so open that garage door and turn off the engine, buddy.

We also have infinite measures of being able to forgive, lend a hand, support each other, share our good fortune, own our mistakes, learn from them, pull ourselves back up, teach each other, and provide compassion – not to mention unconditional love.

Right now. This very second. Someone is thinking of you, grateful for you – just as you are – as dysfunctional as you are. They know you are perfectly flawed. And love you.

So now that you’ve been reminded of your greatness – it’s a good time to cut yourself some slack.

Christine Macdonald

Writing Is Writing

I once read a blog post saying that “blogging does not mean writing.” While I understand the thought, I gotta say I disagree. Pouring your heart out with words is writing.

A blog is a journal; a way to chronicle, vent, share and communicate publicly (or privately). A journal is a writer’s bloodline. Long before passwords and screen savers, a little book called The Diary of Anne Frank was born, and later we discover Go Ask Alice. Both journals.

Fast forward and we have amazing writers like Julie Powell and Diablo Cody. I wonder if Meryl Streep would say Julie wasn’t a writer, as she starred in the movie born from Julie’s blogs titled Julie & Julia.

Perhaps the most notable blogger is Diablo Cody (Brook Busey). Steven Spielberg hired Diablo to write Showtime’s United States of Tara after reading her screenplay for Juno before shooting of the movie even began. Diablo’s first blog appeared under the nickname Darling Girl. Connect the dots and you will find a writer through and through.

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There’s nothing to writing.
All you do is sit down at a typewriter and open a vein”
Walter Wellesley Smith
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Diablo Cody posted this on her blog the night she won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay (Juno).

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Like all art, writing is subjective. Rather than compartmentalize the vehicles in which a person creates their art, I say we celebrate. I’ve read more talent in the walls of this blogsphere than I can count, all from amazing writers. To make such a bold claim as blogging is not writing is not only dismissive, but disrespectful.

I have always been a writer. My first published article was for an independent newspaper in Honolulu. I was 22 years old and already working as a stripper, but wrote part-time because it was (and still is) in my blood. I was asked to write a weekly column and still have the first publication in my desk.

After hanging up my garter and moving to California, I dove in to a career of sales and marketing, eventually landing in advertising. I wrote commercials for television, pitched advertising concepts and even sang jingles to clients.

As a former drug user, stripper and all around Party Gal, I really have come a long way. Scanning old photos and writing my book is proving to be cathartic and more emotionally fulfilling than I ever thought possible. If you ever struggle with where you want your life to go, I highly recommend writing who you were twenty years ago.

Describe yourself in great detail, what were your thoughts, and dreams? Who were your friends? What did you like and dislike about yourself? Your answers may surprise you.

Sometimes it takes looking back to help pave the road ahead.

 

Don’t let anyone define who you are. Instead simply write about it.



Christine Macdonald