Oh hey, blog. You're still here.
I mostly talk on Twitter these days, to be honest. But sometimes there's something that weighs on you and it's going to take a bit more than a tweet to get it out. And you've got to get it out.
We're all insecure about something or another. For writers that insecurity usually is in regards to, wait for it, their writing (WHAT). Note I'm not talking anxiety or anything like that, that's an entirely different kettle of granola, no, just your basic everyday insecurities. But even those come in varying levels, and some can be very hard to deal with.
Mine is singing.
Not singing generally, but singing in front of other, how shall I put this, what we might call, humans. The only humans, the ONLY humans, I have ever felt comfortable singing in front of are my children, two of whom are getting too old to want to listen to me, which leaves but one. Don't grow, buddy. Don't grow.
See, singing is, for me, more than just your average insecurity. It's deep. SO deep.
The weird thing is, and I think honestly this contributes to it in an even weirder way, that I believe I CAN sing. I believe I'm quite good at it. I just... don't know if other people would feel the same way. And I'm afraid to find out.
It is, essentially, to my thinking, the last thing I have. The last thing I can put out there. I'm a fair actress, I'm a good writer (I have my insecurities about both those, no mistake, but not nearly at this level). I've made YouTube videos with my mug on them, front and center, age lines showing and that hits hard. But I put it out there. People know me now. They have seen, and heard, at least to a degree, everything I have to give.
What if they don't like it?
I have nothing left. This is my last chance. My last chance to prove something.
I've been challenging myself lately. It's the hardest thing I've done in a long time, but it's important. I have to do this sometime. Sometime might as well be now. So, I've been joining in a karaoke game on the Twitters. It's themed, so every week you can sing part of a song on that theme. Good clean fun. Or it's supposed to be.
I still can't video myself singing, that's far too much, so I point the camera in the other direction; but even so, once I press record on my phone, I instantly tense up. It takes multiple takes to get anything. Though I concentrate as much as possible on relaxing, just the knowledge that I'm doing this worms into my brain and I find myself tensing up more and more through the song until I'm practically squeaking. Actually, I don't usually get that far; the minute I hit a wrong note I curse at myself and stop recording. Then I attempt to calm down, only to then start the torture over again.
It shouldn't be torture. Like I said, I LOVE to sing. I love it! And I know I can do it... and I think that's the problem.
I'm being a perfectionist.
I know better. Or at least, I know better in nearly every aspect of my life. But I'm expecting too much. That's where the deep (DEEP) insecurity comes in. Because the insecurity won't be satisfied with just doing well. The insecurity wants me to be SPECTACULAR. It wants me to bowl people over. It wants them to go, "WHAT WOW THAT'S YOUR VOICE WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN HIDING".
But that hasn't happened.
Logical me goes "Yeah? So? It's hardly the worst. You've gotten some very nice compliments, and besides, isn't the important thing here that you've DONE it?" But that's Logical Me. Logical Me rides in control most of the time, thank Spock. But when it comes to singing, it loses that control. The Insecure Me takes over, the horrid, annoying, Veruca Salt part that stomps and screams "I WANT MORE!" It isn't satisfied. It probably never will be.
Did I mention that part is stupid? It is. I recognize that. I've gotten lovely compliments as I said, mostly along the lines of "what a sweet voice". But Veruca doesn't WANT a sweet voice. Veruca wants an AMAZING voice. When Veruca gets those comments, it goes into a corner and sulks, leaving the rest of me feeling empty and depressed. Last week I was depressed the ENTIRE REST OF THE DAMN DAY BECAUSE I SANG A STUPID SONG.
Did I also mention, this is a really really big insecurity?
I listen to the others who join in. Sometimes there might be a flat note, but they take it in stride. They do it. They sing the damn song and put a smile on their face. And they. Are. Amazing. Every last one. They get accolades and applause gifs and they deserve every bit of it, I give them plenty myself and mean every word I say (well, I rarely say stuff I don't mean). I think for my part though, it contributes to my problem further because I end up going... why can't I do that? Why can't I just sing the damn song? Who cares if I hit a flat note? Who cares if I don't sing it perfectly? Who cares if the neighbors are listening (which I know they were this morning, I heard them moving around which means they certainly heard me belting out "Colors of the Wind" and cursing every time my throat got closed up, which it did because I knew they were listening so AAAARGH)?
I care. I CARE. Not only that, I care so much, I get frustrated and angry and nervous and shaky (really shaky), which makes me more upset and pretty soon I'm not just shaking but crying and yelling at myself, why can't you DO this??
Have I mentioned, this is a really really REALLY big insecurity?
Things that deeply rooted won't be changed overnight. This is going to take a lot of work. But I'm going to keep going. And perhaps, someday I'll sing a song just right and share it with the world and all will be well and the sun will shine bright and cartoon birdies will sing and rainbow unicorns will come to the house and munch on the handy kettle of granola in the corner (so THAT'S what that's for).
Ok, so that's not LIKELY to happen. But you know what IS, at the least, a definite possibility?
I'll sing the damn song.
And I will survive.
Writer, dancer, actress, mother, me.