So I’m finally back home again and my family feels complete. It’s a great feeling. I may have to go back in a month or so but that’s okay, it won’t be for nearly as long.
And I’m so grateful I have a strong marriage that can withstand, and even get stronger, through such absences.
It’s the best of all worlds. If I haven’t said it lately, I am extraordinarily blessed. And I kinda think that was the main lesson of the journey. I spend a lot of time focused on those things I don’t have I get blinded to the things that I do have.
Now, I am rededicated to some of the goals I had a few months ago. Health wise I’m about 20 pounds behind where I want to be, but even that’s okay. I maintained the weight loss even with the trip and eating a more pescatarian diet. This proves that when it goes to maintaining my weight, I now have the perfect diet to do so.
But now I’m back to a pretty strict vegetarian/vegan diet for the next month. No dairy for sure, I’m convinced that is the devil for me. No sugar. No meat (with the occasional exception for fish – like for the family bbq we have planned for Thursday).
In fact I’m on a salad detox for the week. I’ll be eating a lot of veggies (mostly raw), with some legumes thrown in for fiber and protein.
I even bought some quinoa, although I’m clueless how to prepare it because I never got around to experimenting in California. There’s a cold salad I might try, chock full of veggies and good stuff.
So the excitement is definitely back for how I used to eat. I really thought giving in to those old temptations would mean I would fall completely away from it.
Turns out, it was one of the reasons I looked forward to coming back home. Los Angeles wasn’t the vegan haven I thought it would be. There are definitely more options, but you kind of have to seek it out. Even the stuff I can buy at my regular grocery store I wasn’t able to find out there in those regular grocery stores, which I found kind of ironic.
Plus now I can ditch eating out so much and concentrate on cooking more. Even staying at my mother in law’s, the times I cooked were rare. We ate out A LOT – which makes it even more astonishing I didn’t gain any weight.
I credit that to getting out and exercising more. I read an article that exercise actually keeps you mentally fit longer in your life, and after seeing the state my aunt and uncle were in it made keeping mentally fit (and physically fit) even more a priority.
Toward that end I walked a lot more even with my back problems. I can’t go full throttle into an exercise regimen, but I definitely can implement some changes.
A w-a-l-k at the p-a-r-k with my favorite furry little trainer is on tap for today, and will probably try to do that every other day to start.
The good news is I lost a couple of stubborn inches that showed up in the smaller size when I went shopping for clothes in California. I even went down a cup size.
These are all good things that I am going to continue.
I’m determined to make this happen.
As with the writing. While I was in Los Angeles I went to the Showbiz Expo and it was very enlightening. I attended a panel for the Modern Spec Script, and this gave me some insight on what I can do – even from a distance – to break into the business.
One of the panelists, a co producer for How to Train Your Dragon, said something that resonated with me: “If you have a story to tell, you should be telling it.”
And so I shall.
I’ve been really giving serious thought to doing short films to start, I have a couple of ideas I just need some collaborators. Toward *that* end I’m going to be hitting up my industry contacts in ways I had previously been too tentative to do.
Like I said, I’ve been one who was loathe to make waves even if I was drowning… and never is this more true than with the writing.
So I got a contact from the Expo as well as entered one of my scripts into the prestigious Nicholl – a contest by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences to gain exposure by the industry with one of five coveted fellowships.
Normally I get very neurotic over my writing before I send one in, and I haven’t entered in a good five or six years because of it. The script I entered was Comic Squad, which is hands down my favorite of all I’ve written. It’s one of those when I read it back I think to myself, “*I* wrote this??” I’ve entered this one a couple of times and it never advanced, but it’s grown a lot in the past several years. It went from being a retro kind of feel to more current, and I think I addressed some issues that may have been plaguing it before.
So off it went – no re-read or edits at all.
I’m also going to dedicate a portion of my day to the writing and treat it like a job. This will incorporate those money making opportunities through Helium.com, as well as script ideas.
I may or may not abandon the novels, though. As I walk through a bookstore I feel intimidated because I don’t read nearly enough to know the current market.
I thought Twilight was mediocre, for example – and it’s a huge hit.
I see way more movies than read books, so it would appear that is where my interest lies.
This may mean a move in my future to get back out to Los Angeles, because I can definitely see benefit in being out there around the business. There’s always something going on, and mixers and social events to meet people who are already in the industry. I missed the screenwriting karaoke event thanks to my back, so I definitely want to make up for that when I go out there again.
I plan to write a couple of shorts to take with me as well – including an adaptation to my favorite short story “The Waiter”. It’ll be a challenge to take that narrative and turn it into pictures, but I really think I’m up for it.
In every obstacle, there is opportunity.
That’s the big lesson to take away from my time in California.
I’ll be blogging about specific events, like my time on Let’s Make a Deal, in future blogs.
In the meantime – time to get to work. Busy day that includes housework, exercise, writing and family.
If I haven’t said it lately…
I love my life.