Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Journal 56 Your Voice in my Head

This is the title of the book I just finished reading.
I stayed up very late a couple of nights this week because I couldn't stop reading it.
Oddly, it reminded me of another book I read, years ago, called "Wasted" which had very similar subject matter, namely, the struggle against black depression and self-hatred, cloaked by bulimia and other self-destructive tendencies.
This book is by Emma Forrest, who is a famous ( I did not know this, I had never heard of her, I don't know much/enough about the land of Hollywood, movies, actors, the lives they lead) screenwriter.
She is also batsh*t crazy, and the image when I googled her was one of a literary-looking woman in her early thirties, with a veil of something over her eyes. And when I describe her as batsh*t crazy, I in no way mean this to be derogatrory. I actually admired her very frank writing style, her battle against the thought-demons that plague her daily, her fight to stay alive, both in general and after a mind-numbing, heart-searing break up with a man who wanted her to have his children. ( I had to google the man before I finished the book to figure out who he was. I just had to know. In the book, he is given an acronym moniker, and there are a few small hints that he is a famous actor, but nothing more. I'm guessing she didn't want to be sued. But oh..finding out who it was was the cherry on the sundae. Let's put it this way: someone I longggg suspected of being an absolute and total dog. Not far off the mark. I know, I know, one side of the story and all that. But this book reads like gossip, and so should this 'review').
The main thrust of the story, though, is not Emma's relationship with this cad actor. It's her relationship with her intelligent, thought-provoking therapist, and his amazing insights into her behaviour and actions, and how he helped her translate and channel some of that manic energy to do more good to herself than harm.
Good therapists can do that. How is a mystery but the Why and the What are more gripping.
As I read I was reminded of my own therapist and our relationship, dating back to the late 90's when I was a troubled-twenty-something also going through a major break-up, alongside the drama of being the victim of a robbery at the place where I then worked. Needless to say, I was screwed emotionally and psychologically, and I was barely twenty-five.
But I never resorted to cutting, starving, or sacrificing my self-respect for a little attention.
My neuroses was turned inward.
Like even now, as I sit here, closing out the day, on my birthday, I let the neuroses take over and I am not remotely grateful or overjoyed to be alive or any of that type of happy-person stuff. I just think that 'great, there is a tornado warning' and this has messed up the birthday plans I had with my mom (hard to drive out east a bit when there is a tornado about to bear down--whether or not that actually materializes remains to be seen, but my mom didn't want me to take the chance, and truth be told neither did I so here I am, plan-less on my bday but wanting to be safe...) Anyway. M. sent me flowers at work today and I turn my head to look at them, and then out the window, every time I have a stress-thought (work was the pits today too. All sorts of demands, frustrations ie, losing an entire excel document I've been working on, all formulated and then...gone...where? WHERE?). So that has added to the pile. Then, I flip-flop again and feel so buoyed up by all the calls and the messages from people and then I land back down to earth and feel like, even though I have often felt adrift on an island alone these last few months, it is still extremely hard to be around people and try to 'fake it til you make it'. I can't fake it. The truth is, I don't even try anymore. My birthday surprise to myself might be to go across the street to the pub, that way guaranteeing I won't be 'stranded' anywhere like the last tornado (ie, outside. yes, I was), and I'll have a glass of wine in front of me and a book. However, the rooftop might be an appealing place to be, too, pre-high-winds, and pre-torrential rains and hail, which Environment Canada also predicts.
So there you have it. My book and birthday review. I still have LOTS in common with the Emma Forrest types of this world, despite my non-participation in the 'behaviours'.

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