Wednesday, June 29, 2011

I quit

I called it quits last week. From life, from TRYING so hard to do everything - and I must say, it's been rather nice.

Two weeks ago, my car broke down - yet again - and cost me another $50o I did not have. I can't afford car payments on a new car, and I can't afford to keep spending $500 fixing the car I do have, and both of my jobs are two hour daily commutes, with no bus routes to either one. I went round and round in my head, trying to think of solutions, resources, things I could do differently...

Nope. Nothing.

I got my car back the next day (it spent the night in the shop) and spent the day driving around Hollywood, trying to drop off headshot submissions to theatrical agents. I had six to drop off... traffic was so bad I was only able to drop off two. I spent five hours in traffic, getting sun-burnt, no air conditioning, just to drop off two envelopes. And when I got home I realized that I had forgotten to attach resumes to the headshots of those submissions. I guess it's lucky I was only able to drop off two of them, eh?

I finished up my submissions and haven't heard a peep. Not a single word. And last week, I spent most of Monday night/early Tuesday morning vomiting violently, to what I can only guess was food poisoning, because I have not felt that ill in a very, very long time. Benni got it a little bit too (for all those smart-asses about to suggest maybe I was pregnant) but he didn't have to throw up, thank God.

And I had friends and family members on both ends telling me to work harder. Work even harder to submit to agents, work even harder to figure out what to do with the car, work even harder and longer hours doing this, or that, or organizing this, or planning that...

No.

I quit.

This week, anyway.

33 comments:

Wine and Words said...

Oh sweetie. Feels good to surrender to it sometime doesn't it. Work harder? Hell. Don't think so. You can shove your headshot up every open crack in the city and it wouldn't matter BECAUSE WE'RE NOT IN CONTROL. They say it's a numbers game. So's the lottery. Fat lot of good that's done me. We are not in control, but YOU have talent my dear. And you are a desperately wonderful person. So I'm gonna believe the old wives tale that as soon as you stop trying to get pregnant, you will. (I don't want you to get preggers silly) but I bet someone is going to call you during this "give up and quit" stage. Someone is gonna call and break the whole thing wide open!

((Hugs)) my tough little friend.

Miss Sweet Tea said...

I feel your pain! I want to quit as well. I hope your week gets better!

Alesa Warcan said...

Called it quits from life? Rest in peace!

It's not a rout (or a trout for that matter, but that is another story), it's a tactical retreat to regroup your forces and start up again even stronger, but hopefully with less effort.

Even the best soil must go fallow for a while to yield the best crops.

But enough with the cheesy parallels, cheese without wine and good bread hardly seems interesting at all!

So while taking a breather it doesn't guarantee anything, hopefully you'll feel better afterwards...
So here is to you finding your pace again after you requiescat in pace.

Jo said...

Taking pressure off yourself is a good thing, my friend. These people who have been telling you to work harder just don't know. They really do mean well, but they don't know. Only you do. I've been there with loved ones so often that now I just smile, agree, and keep doing my thing....which sometimes means taking a break.
Take care of you!
xox

ed pilolla said...

i'm a big fan of quitting:)
sometimes, it makes sense, just being stuck in traffic as you describe it, would make me so insane. if i get caught in hollywood traffic, or 405 traffic, it's enough to send me mental.
i respect what your friends and family say, to work harder. i have a tendency to hit friction, back away and attempt to find a way around it. but sometimes there isn't a way around it, only through it. next week is supposed to be much hotter than this week, according to our weather people. keep some spf 50 in the glove box:)
giving up is a way of changing our energy. ceasing to resist sometimes brings things to us, like annie mentioned with perhaps someone calling you during this time. it's always worthwhile to experiment. besides, i have a feeling you won't be down and out for long. you certainly do strike me as a fighter.

Phoenix said...

Thanks, guys. Your comments are making me feel a hell of a lot better. I appreciate every single one of you. :)

Marion said...

Oh, girlie. We all have days we want to resign from life. I started to write a poem once about all the clunker (hooptie, we call 'em) cars we'd had and I had to stop after about the 25th car because I was laughing so hard. One day you'll laugh. If not, go read this and laugh:

http://thebloggess.com/2011/06/and-thats-why-you-should-learn-to-pick-your-battles/

Love you,
Marion

PS: Okay, One car we bought for $100 and it had no brakes, but it did have a hole in the floorboard where I swear I used to stick my foot out and gear down to stop it. The same car also had a slow leak in the gas tank, but I'd put a huge Folger's coffee can under the leak, then pour it back into the tank after my shift at Micky D's. Hard times....LMAO! xoxo

rosaria said...

We have all been there!
And some of us hung up our keys and left for good.
But then, you'd leave behind what you love, what you breathe.

Do break the routine, though. Instead of trying to get chosen, be your own producer/director/casting agent. What play would you write/direct/produce? Anything out there that needs to have the light of day, and you're the only one who knows about it? Haven't you read just that little book that can turn into that screenplay....

Go on, think of how you'd run things in this universe. Then, just get on your horse and go find all the people and things you need to make it all happen.

Or, move to Portland. There is quite a community of creative souls there, and you could ride your bike anywhere!

Robin said...

I know that when you say quit, what you mean is taking a time out. Hey, we all need those. It is that time when we refortify. I quit all the time. But I don't stay down. The floor is mighty uncomfortable. You know this already. So, take a deep breath and when you feel ready to raise the roof, you will be right back there in it to win it. Thanks for the Lantern info. I like that Blue Lantern stuff. I can roll with it:-)

Lydia K said...

It's important to just take a break sometimes. You need to unplug from the race and just...be.

Last week I was on social-networking overload, stressed out about writing, and I ended up cleaning my house instead. I got sweaty, dirty, but the total change of doing something different and withdrawing from this other part of my life was refreshing and recharging. And I had a clean house! (not that I'm recommending that you clean. Whatever works for you!)

kj said...

your honesty washes over me like a warm cold refreshing rain. do you know of hugh prather? he says when you get in a battle with life lose as fast as you can. :^)

i think something confusing is in the air. or in the water. things just don't seem to be working right here on the east coast and in the life of kj either. taking a break is very sane, tracy, and here's hoping that car of yours will decide to fix itself next time.

when i read your blog title i hoped hoped you didn't mean you quit your blog. i lost my friend baino this week and i would be too sad if you were no longer waxing and waning.

nice to be here, you know...

kj

Anthony Duce said...

The advice to just work harder, we’ve all heard before.
I agree with the quitting, as long as you come up with a new plan before going back. Don’t do just the same things again.
In my experience, creating change, doing something different, though maybe not comfortable, or as easily understood, should be considered. That doesn’t mean giving up on your dreams, it just means trying out some new options, even drastic ones, to get there.
I know it’s easy, for someone on the outside to make statements like this. I was told this too, a number of times.
It works. I’ve quit the things that didn’t work in life, after struggling away at them for years, and have been surprised each time how much better, after working through the changes, life becomes, and how much easier it is in the end to focus on those dreams and original goals.

PorkStar said...

We all reach a breaking point and quitting for a while is not a bad idea. Perhaps you just need to take it easy and recharge your batteries.

JJ said...

Phoenix: I have dedicated my post today to you.

The Disconnected Writer
http://thedisconnectedwriter.blogspot.com/

Stephanie Faris said...

I'm an aspiring writer...but I deal with the publishing world, not Hollywood. Hollywood is a tough nut to crack but I think what I've seen in publishing is that the ones who keep trying and keep trying (and, of course, have talent) eventually make it. Perseverance makes all the difference. I went through more than a few stages where I thought about giving up -- I even did quit writing for a few years in my 30s, after my divorce -- but I was always writing, just not trying to get published. Now I have an agent and I'm in that limbo stage between landing an agent and getting a book deal and that's hard too. I think we always see the stories of people landing an agent and becoming an overnight sensation within weeks...but true "overnight success" usually takes time!

Kate said...

I hear you on this one! I think we all gets to the stage where we just throw our hands up and take a time out, Lord knows I do.

Huge hugs to you!

Bathwater said...

Good for you, no use killing yourself to get ahead. It is easy for others to say try harder, sometimes you got to just be patient.

Joker_SATX said...

I have been told that the more life beats the shit out of me the funnier I get.

If you have stopped by my Joker blog lately you can see that I am practically shoveling myself in my own grave...I'm that funny.

Keep the faith chica...

Dave said...

Im at a loss for inspiring things to say, but luckily there are plenty of people above me here who have that covered. You are definately blessed with some good friends. So...Im just gonna virtually back hand your crappy luck and see if that helps. :) Hope things look up soon kiddo.

Darcy said...

when things suck it is so hard to walk in the fog of the suckness....letting go for a moment to just be will probably revive you--good things are right around the corner--because you deserve them.

Nick Thomas said...

It can be depressing getting rejections or no comments (I get them from editors all the time). You just have to keep at it and good things almost always happen.

Two Tigers said...

Here's a little secret about how to take it when people tell you to work harder: when someone hears life isn't working out for you, they would much rather believe "she's just not trying hard enough" than admit that sometimes life is unfair, sucks, craps repeatedly on the good people while rewarding the bad, and in general does not always respond favorably to someone doing everything right to succeed at whatever they are after. That shakes their world view, implying perhaps they too might not be in full control of their destinies. You are working hard enough, me dear, and then some. As for taking a little "quit" break, I can think of no one who more deserves it! Rest. Breathe. Rant a little if you must. Then return. With a vengeance.

Lori ann said...

aw tracy. damn it. this is so SO not fair. car troubles are the worst, especially where you are.

i just know things will work out, they always do, they will change, that we can always count on.

can headshots and resumes be emailed? do they have to be handdelivered?

sending big hugs and love.

xxx

drollgirl said...

oh girl. what a tough week. i'd say take a nice break. you can work harder some other time. sometimes you just need to relax and clear your head and hope things fall into place eventually! and i sure hope things get better for you soon!

p.s. your car is an asshole!

Gwen said...

I'm once again late to the show but I'm sending you my prayers. Sometimes calling it quits is what we need and I truly hope that taking a step back has given you some clarity this past weekend. Sending you viritual {{HUGS}}

Jo Schaffer said...

Take that break, girl! We all need one sometimes.

You're awesome-- don't forget it. (=

Rob-bear said...

Maybe, instead of trying to work harder (which doesn't work), you might want to work different. As in try something new. Totally distinct, unlike you've ever tried before.
Sounds lame, I know, but sometimes it works. It did for me, once.
I just hope something works for you.
Blessings and Bear hugs.

Barbara said...

Don't quit, my dear. There's always something better around the corner!
Don't think we all never have weeks like this. I remember sitting on a bed and sobbing....more than once.
Hang in there.

Purple Cow said...

Yeah, life's like that sometimes!

Hang in there. And visualise success!

Kris said...

Definitely quit this week to get your bearings. You need those!

Sometimes I think when we give the universe time to respond it does! :o))

Ren- Lady Of The Arts said...

oy vey- that sucks- a lot-
I feel so frustrated for you about the CV's not being there- that is just not fair.

I totally agree with taking a break- sounds like you deserve it.

Red Shoes said...

It's ok to quit for a day... or even for a week. As I tell my students, however, the only way we are assuredly going to lose is if we do quit.

~shoes~

Annje said...

sometimes, it feels good to quit for a bit and then feel a little more energized when you get back in the saddle again (or whatever the appropriate metaphor would be ;-)

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