The Sorceress And The Survival Job

It had been one of those days. Nights, really.

I have a confession.

Your sweet little Vixen has... a Survival Job.

I dislike it intensely, although, it must be noted, that I am, in fact, quite good at it. You see, I have somehow fallen into work as a theatrical wardrobe supervisor, which means I am responsible for running a show from the costume standpoint. It is my lot to ensure that actors, dancers, opera divas, performers of every ilk look and feel amazing when they get onstage. In the process trying to keep myself from not feeling like week old recycling.

And I will admit, my eyes well up when I watch them from the sides of the stage. Not just because I know how it feels, that rush of euphoria, that unabashed love hitting you like a freight train, but also because I know the blood and sweat that goes into it. That perfect moment of being exactly there, giving to your audience, and receiving their energy back, that most beautiful exchange of pure energy, is bliss. And addictive.

So when I'm backstage instead of onstage, I vascillate between morose and supportive, with a hefty dash of jealousy thrown in for good (?) measure. I am alternately proud of them, happy for them, and angry with myself for standing there, in the wings, collecting someone's sweaty shirt from the floor, in the dark.

Since I've been on both sides of the curtain, I know what it's like. And the good part is that I have NEVER been an ass to a crew member. Not even close. I'm gracious, and beyond appreciative.

On a film set last year (Goddess, has it been that long??) I was overwhelmed by the PA's who wrapped a coat around my shoulders between every take, and brought me hot teas during never a ending outdoor scene in the wee hours of an oddly frigid L.A. night. Endless moments for about ten on screen minutes as the lighting needed adjusting. A truck grumbled past the lot. Someone dropped a line. Sure, it was their job, I know...but still...human kindness is beautiful, no matter what the motivation. It always manages to transcend.

I stayed energetic and focused, take after take, as other actors fumbled, because, you know what? One day it will be me fumbling, and that compassion will be received back with open arms.

And I sent a thoughtful email to every single person who joined me in creating something magical in that film. From the angel who brought me tea, to the makeup woman, who, frankly, gave me some seriously overwhelming fuschia lips, not to mention generic "modern Hollywood" hair: the dreaded, ubiquitous flat iron banana curls. (I fought for my brows, hard, but the hair...well...)

But I thanked her anyway. genuinely. Because she did what she knew how to do, on that day.

Only two wrote me back. and that's fine. It's the industry, after all. 

Flash forward to tonight.

It wasn't even one of those notoriously long and banefully stressful nights where you are expected to pull a rabbit out of your hat. it was more the mind numbingly average kind.

I dislike average, intensely.

Nothing really happened, and that was the point.

I was trying not to spiral downward into a black hole of self pity. My book, so alive and revved of late, was now officially on hold until this run was over, and it was tearing me apart. Additionally, a film I was supposed to begin shooting was delayed until Spring, my video work was in need of equipment to move forward, my cat was sick, my man neglected, and my apartment a mess.

I came in, ran a bath.

Poured a splash of gin, 'cause you know, sometimes I'm just a Dame. Sometimes the Lady is a Tramp.

I didn't have one molecule of energy left for concocting, so I filled my bathtub with Aura Cacia's delightful Chamomile Relaxing Bath. It's so much more seductive than it sounds. It's a blend of chamomile, lavender, and patchouli, which sounds like a hippie grandma jumble, but is actually amazing. 

Slathered on Acure's Cell Stimulating Facial Mask. It's green and full of incredible things, and was sure to transform my cranky face.

I set Contessa's Balance Blend out for dabbing post-soak, and submerged.

Breathing it all in, and forcefully exhaling all the yuck, I began to feel intoxicated on so many levels. With every breath, more of the herbs absorbed in, and more negativity left me.

There is always a way, my Loves, to shift the energy.

Sometimes it is Herculean, yes, but it can be done.

But slipping into euphoria, still hanging on to my anxiety, I asked myself why my world wasn't awesome ALL the time. I racked my brain to understand why it has be so awful in between the moments of sheer bliss. I work hard. I set my intentions. And often, it is rock wife backstage champagne and travel, my own turn onstage and in front of the camera, and the exalted Days At Home To Make Things.  As I tried to reason in an increasingly fuzzy state, it suddenly made sense. I began to see how the pendulum actually swings. I saw that much of it really is great, incredible even...but only because I'VE MADE IT SO.

I've created my world. All of it. From the ridiculous to the sublime. We all do.

And here's the thing, my Darlings: the time in between the good stuff is exactly where the actual work occurs. The deep, dark matter. The karmic moving of boulders, or even small rocks. You can't see it, but you're doing it. The hard yards are a necessity. They allow the dharma to happen.

But there is still that funny timing thing.

Patience. Seasons. You gotta respect it, and also see it coming.

This is where I struggle. 

I forget, almost instantly, the highs of working on my own creations, or being invited lovingly into someone else's. The crash into the drudge of "normal" hits so hard that I can't see with any perspective how the balance works. Like most people, I get seasonal affective disorder all year round in the building where I work: cravings for light, fresh air, carbs, sweets, caffeine. I start feeling like shit, my confidence starts to plummet, and I just want to disappear. I don't want to connect with anyone, rather, I want to stay under the radar completely. And I'm not exactly an inconspicuous gal. The point is: how can any of us let a situation which we created, which is meant to serve a purpose, either divine or practical or both, turn us into a complete mess?

I can sing the blues day and night about my job, but I also have to seriously honor what it does give me: the cash to keep going on all my beloved creations, my dreams. Some might say folly, I say gorgeous, honest, joyous NECESSITY.

And never forget that like attracts like. Words, thoughts are extremely powerful. Think of every unkind blurb that goes through your head as a full-on spell. What you intend happens. The negativity you're slinging all over the place is bouncing right back in your face, every time. Turn it around, Kittens.

So when you're ringing up drones at a retail counter, or foaming your finest to serve an aloof coffee fiend, or rotting away in a cubicle, find how to integrate it with your dreams, because it isn't separate. It's all connected. Make the job work FOR you, not against. You will be done with it at some point, but only when you've figured out how to absorb what it has taught.

Align with the stars. make it happen.

 It DOES NOT happen over night.

But it does happen.

Trust.

Create.

Love.

We're all in this crazy life together. 

And I adore you so.

xxx Alise