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>Collapsed brain

>I am really determined to get an earlier night tonight. It was 7am again last night/this morning, and I just find that so hideous. I hate being awake still when I hear my parents getting up. If I lived on my own I don’t think I would care, but I just hate hearing other people getting up when I haven’t been to sleep yet. So I am really hoping for an earlier night tonight.

I got through rehearsal ok. I had to go at 6:30 to work on my songs for an hour with the Musical Director. That was ok. He seemed happy enough, although he is very precise about what he wants, so is quite hard to please. And seems to think that I have lungs of steel and can hold a note for far longer than I actually can. But he seemed pleased. Although it was slightly embarrassing, as I have a tendency to not warm up very thoroughly before rehearsals – on Mondays I literally don’t get a chance to as I go straight from ballet, and on Wednesdays I tend to do maybe 5 or 10 minutes, which is totally inadequate. Tonight I had probably warmed up for about 20 minutes, which is still fairly pathetic, but an improvement on usual, and he asked if I had just come from a singing lesson or had been warming up properly as it sounded much better than usual. Note to self: warm up properly – people can tell the difference unfortunately. I have got very lazy vocally – I haven’t had a proper singing lesson since the summer, and I don’t sing every day, which I really should be doing, and then I expect to be able to go into a rehearsal, without warming up properly, and sing four solos, a duet, and solo lines in a couple of other songs, plus ensemble singing. Doesn’t work. It isn’t fair on my voice. After that I spent an hour and a quarter getting increasingly fed up and desperate to get home, as I was just sitting around, as they were working on a number I am not in. Then finally they started work on the number we were scheduled to rehearse tonight, which is a big ensemble number, lead by me and three others, which has a big tap break in the middle. The tap is very fast – not difficult steps, but very fast, and with some tricky rhythms, which makes it difficult. Unfortunately I have already forgotten one section, which is indicative of my current inability to concentrate and retain information, as usually I just have to do a dance a couple of times and it is ingrained in my head, but I just can’t remember some of it at all. I now have no rehearsals for a week and a half, which is the most enormous relief. It is half term next week, and as the MD is a music teacher, and the Director/Choreographer is a dance teacher, they both have the week off work, and so are going away (they are a couple), which means no rehearsals until Sunday 27th. I also don’t have ballet next week for the same reason, so I basically have no commitments at all for the next week and a half, and that just feels so good. Although at the same time, it does make me feel more unsafe. When I have commitments, like rehearsals that I know I can’t miss as it would mess things up for the rest of the cast, it makes me feel obliged to keep going however shit I feel, whereas now I am free from that, which makes the suicidal thoughts even stronger. Of course I realise it would be difficult for them after that week and a half if I were dead, but I can’t think that far ahead, and all I can think at the moment is that I have no commitments at the moment, my mum’s birthday is out of the way, and so there is nothing to stop me acting on my thoughts. To be honest I am feeling quite unsafe.

I tried to phone my GP earlier. I didn’t have a clue what I would say to her. Saying ‘I don’t trust you because you have been taken over by them and now you have taken over my mum, but I need help’ seemed somewhat inappropriate, but is the truth. I don’t trust her any more – I don’t trust anyone. But I am desperate, particularly as I knew I have been feeling increasingly unsafe. So I didn’t really know what to do. In the end I did ring, at about 12:30, and the receptionist said they would get her to call me back as she was with a patient. She didn’t ring all afternoon, and I know that she has afternoon surgery from 4 – 6, so I knew that if she did call me back it would be after that. I had left my mobile number as usual, but I had to leave for rehearsal at 6, and was rehearsing alone with the MD until nearly 7:30, so couldn’t have taken any calls in that time even if she had rung. My GP tends to phone at strange times – I have had a call from her at 8:15pm before, so I kept my phone on vibrate in my pocket, so that I could answer it if she did ring, but I didn’t hear anything. When I got home my dad said she had rung at 7:30 – I don’t know why she had called the landline rather than my mobile, but obviously it meant I couldn’t speak to her. That doesn’t really feel like a bad thing – I didn’t know what I could say anyway. I just feel like I need help from somewhere, and I would prefer to speak to her than whoever happened to be on duty at the CMHT. L is in work tomorrow, so I have sent an email asking if she could phone me. Again, I feel very unsure about what I can say, as I am still feeling really mistrustful of all professionals, and I know she can’t change how I feel or what I am planning to do, but I just really need to talk to someone I know, and whom I have trusted in the past, even if I don’t at the moment. It probably won’t help or make any difference, but at least I will have tried. I really have absolutely no idea what I can say to her. I don’t even know what I am scared of. I just don’t trust anyone at the moment. I do wonder whether there is any point trying to get help. I have done that, it didn’t work. Maybe I should just learn from that and not try and get help – just get on with it. But when I feel very suicidal and unsafe I just get this frustrating part of me that nags me to talk to someone, even if I know it will make no difference. I suppose knowing it will make no difference is why it feels safe to do so. I know nobody can stop me from acting on my thoughts if that is what I choose to do, or at least L wouldn’t anyway, so despite feeling like she has been taken over and is against me, I know she wouldn’t make me do something I wasn’t happy with, like insisting I go to A&E, or having me assessed or anything like that, and my mum already knows so it isn’t like she can threaten to speak to her. That’s one of the reasons I couldn’t call the CMHT whilst she was away – there was the possibility of fuckwit ex-care coordinator being on duty, and if he knew I was feeling like this then he would insist I went to A&E, or have me assessed under the MHA, and I am not having either of those things happen. But I still trust L not to do that, and I don’t believe my trust in that respect is misplaced, because I know hospital is the last thing she wants for me. I feel confused. I don’t know what to say to her if she calls. I don’t know what I can tell her. I don’t trust her because I know she is on their side, but she is also my only option. And she can’t stop me. Suicide feels so appealing. It is like it is beckoning to me. I just feel like such a mess at the moment. I am beyond confused. My brain just feels like it has collapsed.

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>Weather and Christmas

>Lots of pretty snow. It started snowing yesterday afternoon and snowed all afternoon and evening, so we ended up with a good 6 inches of snow, which is the first proper snowfall we have had this winter – when everyone else had shit loads a few weeks ago we just had a tiny covering. Very pretty. Not so great from the practical point of view.

Firstly, our poor Christmas tree, which was supposed to be put up this weekend, was standing outside when it started snowing, and so got covered with 6 inches of snow, along with everything else. Therefore it couldn’t come inside, or the snow would have then melted and flooded the lounge, which would have been somewhat inconvenient. Then there is the added problem that it needs potting, which involves needing soil, and the ground being a) frozen solid, rock hard, inpenetrable, and b) also being covered with 6 inches of snow. Not entirely sure what the plan is. Can shake most of the snow off the tree, but it doesn’t help the problem of having nothing to plant it in of course.

I had a carol concert tonight. I wasn’t sure if we would be able to get there or not. The roads had been gritted, but unsurprisingly grit isn’t terribly effective on top of lots of snow – I think they are meant to put it down before it starts snowing, or when there is a tiny bit, rather than when it has finished snowing and it is laying thick everywhere. So the roads are a nightmare. In the end we decided to go, but had to drive very slowly the whole way, and there was a bit of skidding at times. The concert was fine. The majority of both the band and choir had managed to make it, which was pretty impressive given how many of us live in the middle of nowhere, with terrible roads, and therefore had a nightmare getting there, although one person did point out that we must all be completely mad to have bothered. My sister is still doing a wonderful job of ignoring me – in a way it is quite impressive that we could both sing Soprano in the same choir, and her not speak to me at all during rehearsals or the concert. I have made some effort several times, but she certainly is not reciprocating, so there is very little I can do about it. I just find it quite astounding how immature she can be.

Audience numbers at the concert were down on other years, which was to be expected, but there were still probably 250 people or so I would guesstimate, so not bad given the conditions. Carols were fine – sore throat and snotty nose weren’t really helping, but it was fine – the throat is getting better, and although I obviously could have sung better I think it was fine. And nobody would have known if it wasn’t actually – the joys of singing in a choir rather than as a soloist! It was bloody freezing though. A blouse and skirt just are not very warm, and the church wasn’t very warm, I suppose because there was about half the number of people there would usually be, so I felt like a snowman by the end of it. Then had the fun of the journey home again.

We were supposed to be going Christmas shopping tomorrow but I think realistically that isn’t going to happen – it is a good 45 minute drive to where we were going, which would take much longer with the roads as they are, and it isn’t meant to get above -3, and is supposed to be foggy too, so I think it would just be dangerous to try and travel that far. We will go on Tuesday or Wednesday, although Tuesday could be difficult because I am seeing L at 11, and I think after that would be getting a bit late to go off shopping, so it will probably have to be Wedneday. Which is leaving it a little close for comfort, but never mind! The weather is so frustrating – I wish it had stayed dry this week, and then just snowed loads on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day – that would have been so pretty, and wouldn’t have caused any inconvenience. We could have just made a snowman. As it is I think it is going to melt before then and we will just end up with nasty slush everywhere. Yuck. Wrong timing by 1 week unfortunately.

I am not feeling too stressed about Christmas, but I am about New Year. I am trying not to think about it, because I get really upset and panicky when I do. I just absolutely do not want it to happen at all, under any circumstances. I just don’t. I really feel at the moment like I can’t cope with it. It is just too overwhelming and stressful. As soon as I hear the words or think about it at all, I get this sudden mad rush of totally overwhelming thoughts. I genuinely have absolutely no idea how I will get through it right now – I might try and knock myself out early in the night and just sleep through it, but then I will still have to wake up and it will be 2011, and that is just so unbelievably shit. I need to freeze time or rewind time or erase myself or something. Very anxious, very stressed, very desperate.

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>Still here

>So I am staying put until further notice, but am in the process of moving. Deciding on a name is surprisingly difficult. Obviously I have become known in the blogosphere as Bippidee, but I feel like I am going to need to change that even if I do move to WP, which is the current plan. Unfortunately, the only other name I have thought of so far has a rather unfortunate shortening, which is what I would end up being called all the time. Hmph. When I do move I will make sure that anyone who wants to follow me to the new blog can do so.

So what with all the posts about my childhood, and then the identity crisis yesterday I seem to have been neglecting day to day stuff somewhat. I am not sure how I have been doing. I am, without a doubt, better than I was a few weeks ago, but naturally I am still not feeling great. I am slightly confused by my sleep lately. I have always needed about 10 hours sleep ideally, to wake up and not feel tired and stay reasonably alert the whole day. I used to end up napping every afternoon, virtually without fail, even if I had slept ok the night before, but definitely if I had got less than 8 hours sleep.  But there have been several days lately when I have only had a few hours, and yet after the inital pain of dragging myself out of bed, have been surprisingly alert all day, and still not been able to sleep that night. Thursday was an example of this. I only got 4 hours sleep, which is nowhere near enough for me, and yet I stayed awake all day, no naps, was pretty awake and alert, and still couldn’t get to sleep before 5am. There is surely something wrong with that? I should have been exhausted and been able to get an early night, but I didn’t get to sleep any earlier than I would have if I hadn’t woken up until the afternoon, and had 9 hours sleep. I was out for a lot of the day too, which should have made me even more tired. And I never nap anymore. I am always tired, but my ability to sleep properly seems to have disappeared.

I am singing in a carol concert on Sunday, just as part of the choir. Well, it is just the choir and silver band. I realised at the rehearsal tonight that I don’t have a bloody clue how the descant goes for While Shepherd Watched, which is slightly problematic, and I have no idea how that happened. I have sung in so many carol concerts/services, and I know all of the descants really well, but I actually don’t think I have ever sung that one before, but I don’t see how that could be possible when I have sung in carol concerts for 12 years. Although the audience can never hear the descants properly anyway, as by the time you have a full choir, organ, silver band, and all the congregation singing, I think the descant gets somewhat lost. Someone had the bloody brilliant idea of making Twelve Days of Christmas a song that everyone sings, ie audience too. I have no idea what they were thinking. The arrangement that we use is very much a choir version – all the voice types sing different days etc, and the tempo changes loads – at one point it gets really fast, and one of the other sopranos pointed out that there is no bloody way they will keep up with that, and it will end up sounding like we are singing it in a round. Bloody ridiculous idea. I always get bored of that song after about 5 days anyway – I am sure the other 7 are unnecessary. Or we could just start with 12 rather than 1? The Hallelujah Chorus goes on rather as well, although I probably shouldn’t say that. And I can never sing For Unto Us properly. I cheat. I can do it slowly, but then when it gets up to speed I just can’t fit all those notes in. I am not really a classical singer, I am a musical theatre singer – The Messiah is a bit much for me really!

Christmas. Hmmm. I still have shopping to do. I have actually done most of it online, but I need to go to the shops to buy things for my mum – the things I wanted to get for her weren’t things I particularly wanted to buy online. And then I need to get something for one of my nephews, but I know what and where to get it, and something small for one of my nieces to go with things I have already got for her, and a few boxes of chocolates for various people, and then I will be finished. I have stopped buying for siblings, since they all have children now, so I just buy for the children, although I haven’t bought for my eldest nephew this year for the first time, because he is 19, works full time, and has far more disposable income than I do, but has never bought for me, despite me buying for him every year. It is a bit weird, because I am his aunt, but he is only 5 years younger than me. So I have always bought him presents because he is my nephew, but it is kind of weird because he is so close to me in age, and now that he is working full time and I am on benefits it just seems a bit ridiculous to be spending money on him really. So that just leaves his younger brother, my sister’s 2 boys, and my brother’s daughter, and step daughter and step son. And my parents of course. If I get time/inclination I might try and make some fudge or something for siblings and their partners, but it was getting too expensive buying for all of them and all of the children – even just with my parents and nephews/nieces I had 8 people to buy for, and it would have been 9 if I had bought for eldest nephew. Oh, and I buy something for my dog…. I wouldn’t actually mind buying for my sisters in law – they are both easy to buy for, and I quite like buying presents for people who are easy to buy for, but my sister (who still isn’t speaking to me) is a nightmare to buy for, and so are my brothers and brother in law. I haven’t started my wrapping yet. Wrapping takes me forever. I am a real perfectionist with my wrapping – I will take ages deciding which paper to use, and which ribbon and label to put with it etc, and then ages making it look pretty. Takes bloody hours, particularly given that I also always have to wrap everything that my dad buys for my mum, a) because he doesn’t have time, b) because he can’t be bothered, and c) because he doesn’t make it look pretty – he just wraps with paper, and my mum really loves prettily wrapped presents with bows and ribbons and things. So I have to do it for him. I tend to get all my presents and find cheesy Christmas films on TV and wrap it all whilst watching them.

We went and bought our Christmas Tree on Tuesday. It isn’t really what I wanted – it is a bit small. But the place we went to weren’t going to be getting any more in, and it was a nicer shape than the bigger ones. We then tried a couple more places, but one didn’t have any, and the other only had 3 left, and 1 was enormous, and 2 were tiny, so we just went back and got the first one. We will put it up this weekend. We will stand it on a box. That will make it look bigger, and keep it out of reach of the animals, which is always a bonus. My old cat will love us putting the tree up. It is his favourite day of the year. He gets ridiculously excited and starts playing with tinsel and baubles etc like a little kitten, despite now being 15. The other cat never plays. The dog will be excited, but the dog is always excited. I don’t buy presents for the cats, but I always buy for him, because he will unwrap them himself and it makes me laugh to watch him. I am trying to think about the positive things about Christmas rather than the things I find stressful, although it is hard. New Year will be worse, because it always is. I hate New Year so much. It makes me feel like such a failure, and I find it incredibly difficult to get through without resorting to self harming behaviours. I tend to end up in a complete state crying hysterically and saying that I want to die. Which I do, but I can usually keep it hidden, but for some reason I just completely break down on New Year’s Eve. I am already dreading it.

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>Performing

>There are a lot of negatives about performing. How competitive it is. How bitchy people can be. How you are constantly being judged. The rejection. The comparisons. Lots of things. It can be a very negative industry at times, which can be very stressful, and where you can feel very alone. But yesterday I was also reminded of how many positives there are, and what a wonderful business it can be. As you know, I was singing in a concert last night. It was a charity concert, starring a well known performer, and I was one of a number of other soloists, most of whom are professionals. I felt very lucky to not only be performing alongside such a fantastically talented and successful performer, but one who was so generous and giving, and such a lovely person. I had met her before a couple of times last year when I did some workshops with her, and knew that she was very nice and genuine, but I wasn’t expecting her to be nearly as hands on yesterday as she was. We had a run through in the afternoon, and I fairly naturally assumed she would just come out to sing her songs, and spend the rest of the time in her dressing room. Instead, she sung her songs, then came and sat out in the auditorium and watched every single one of the soloists. She jumped up and down making suggestions, and helping when people were struggling with anything, and giving people advice on their song, and just generally being so supportive and helpful, which was far beyond what she needed to do. She could, and I think most performers would, have just come out and sung her own songs and ignored what everyone else was doing, but she just got really involved, and it was so nice to see such an experienced performer giving back in that way. She is a wonderful example of how great this business can be. And how sometimes even the people at the top of their game will really make an effort to help others who are still on their way up. In fact, I think it is often the people who are at the top who are the least diva-ish. Yesterday there was absolutely no bitchiness. Everyone got on really well. All the other soloists were lovely and we had great fun in our dressing room. It was just a really lovely example of what a fantastic industry it can be.

The actual run through was difficult for me. There were still pretty severe issues going on with the band timing wise, which was making it virtually impossible for me to know when to come in, so we had to do the start a few times to get it right, and I was worried it was me messing up, but it was apparently the band. In the end we got going and got all the way through, but my voice was really hurting, and it was getting really croaky – mostly actually in the dialogue bits rather than the singing. I was still really not confident with the timing – the scoring for the band part was COMPLETELY different to the normal sheet music, which is obviously what I have been used to rehearsing with – there were random extra bars in some places, and missing bars in others, and it was all a bit all over the place, and therefore worrying. I went down into the auditorium afterwards and was talking to the lead who said ‘That scoring is really strange – I have always done it like X (at which point both of us went da da da da da daa da da da da etc, and established we were used to the same version!). It would completely confuse me like that!’ I replied that it was completely confusing me too, and she said she would have a word with the MD (who was too stressed for anyone apart from her to dare speak to!) and see if we could go through it again, which she did, but the rehearsal ran on so late that there was absolutely no time to do anything again. But she did get her to make sure she was giving me really clear signals as to when to come in, as in the run through I couldn’t tell when she was bringing me in and when she was bringing the band in, which was obviously very confusing. Usually it is fine, because they look at you, but the band were on stage, and so the MD was behind us, and so we saw her via a screen at the front of the stage, but obviously with that you can’t see when she is actually looking at you. So it was all quite different for me, and the band part really was confusing – it would have been nice if it had been closer to the original scoring, both for the band and for me!

I was quite stressed between the run through and the performance, because I had no idea if I was going to be able to get the timing right or not, and there was nothing I could do about it. I desperately wanted another run through, but there wasn’t the opportunity. From the end of the run through, time just flew. We all started putting on our make up, and getting our hair done, and getting into costume etc, and time just flew. Suddenly the concert had started, and time just whizzed by. I wasn’t on until half way through the second half, so had plenty of time to get ready, which is lucky really, as I was still nowhere near ready by the time some of the other girls in my dressing room had already performed! I also nearly fell down the stairs at one point, which was slightly embarrassing, as it was right outside the number 1 dressing room, and I kind of screamed and swore at the same time, just as the lead had walked into her dressing room, so she dashed out to see if I was ok. Stupid shoes!

My actual performance went ok. I was nervous about the band because of the issues at the rehearsal, and I was worried about my voice. It could have been better – it would have been better if I hadn’t been ill. But it wasn’t a disaster. Through gluing my eyes to the screen at the appropriate times I managed to get all the timing right, and I think vocally it was reasonably strong apart from one note that cracked slightly due to my chest/throat. Some of the dialogue did sound slightly croaky, but there really was nothing I could do about that – I was supporting as much as I possibly could, but I have a chest infection, and no amount of support was going to get rid of that! I believe there were some slight mic issues too – it felt like it was fading in and out a bit, and my dad commented on it, but that wasn’t uncommon – it happened to several people. So overall it was ok. I wasn’t entirely happy with my performance, but then I very rarely am, and I feel like I did my best under the circumstances. And it was a really good day, where I met lots of lovely people, performed in the biggest theatre I have ever worked in, had some nice chats and laughs with a performer I have always admired greatly, and had the opportunity to sing in the same concert as her. I feel very lucky to have had that opportunity, and it reminded me of all the brilliant things about performing, and the business, and other performers. She really is true class, both on stage and off.

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>Illness and therapy

>I decided not to take the antibiotics. I think that I probably do have a chest infection, but it might just be a bad throat combined with a cold, and 24 hours on antibiotics wasn’t realistically going to do much, and after that I don’t care if I am ill – my body can just fight it off. So I didn’t really see the point of taking them – if I had got them a couple of days ago it would have, but with 24 hours to go I thought it was quite pointless. I have kept taking the Sudafed, and then honey and lemon Strepsils for my throat, and I did a steam inhalation with Olbas Oil, and will do again in the morning, plus keep taking the Sufafed etc. That is about all I can do really. And hope for the best. I have a full run through with the lead, all the other singers, and the band in the afternoon, and then obviously the concert in the evening. And then after show drinks apparently. I just really hope that I give a decent performance. I am a perfectionist, and I hate knowing already that I won’t be as good as I could be, because of this infection/virus/whatever it is, and that really frustrates me a lot. But I am also quite anxious in case it is a complete disaster and my voice cracks all over the place or something. I want to be good – I am going to be surrounded by such fantastic performers, and I want to do well and be good too. I will be absolutely devastated if I mess up, even if it is down to illness.

A couple of friends are coming to see it. It’s funny, I noticed with Carousel as well, the people who you would expect to come, ie people you are closer to, or who live locally, or who are into theatre, don’t, and then other people that you wouldn’t expect to come do. For example tomorrow, a friend who I haven’t seen for about 6 years is coming, even though she lives a long way away, and a friend I met online years ago but have never actually met in real life is coming. But none of my friends that I actually see are. T said from when I was first cast that he would definitely be coming, and was bringing his family etc, but now isn’t coming. Other friends who either live more locally, or are closer friends, or are fans of the star aren’t coming. But then two people I wouldn’t have expected to come are, and it was exactly the same with Carousel – people who could easily have come didn’t, and then again there were 2 people (although a different 2 people) who I wouldn’t have expected to come who did. Plus my parents are coming of course, but again, none of the rest of my family.

I have an appointment through to see the psychologist. It is for an assessment, at the end of January. I may then be offered CAT (CBT and CAT are basically the only therapies in my area), but L is actually more interested in the assessment. She said if the psychologist and I both thought that therapy would help then obviously that would happen, but she wants me to see her for an assessment anyway, I suppose so that she can get the view of someone else. It will be kind of weird, because I know that the psychologist knows a lot about me already – L has supervision about me with her regularly, and she has read all of my notes apparently (a pretty Herculean task – there are a hell of a lot of them!), so she knows a lot about me, both from my notes, and from talking to L. So it will be quite weird, because although in theory usually people are supposed to have read your notes, they generally seem not to have, and they certainly don’t usually know as much about me as this psychologist does about me. A friend used to have therapy with her, and she is apparently very nice. But obviously it is still about 7 weeks away, and if I do end up having therapy with her then that would be even longer.

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>Sulking

>So the good news is that I bought some Sudafed this evening, and either it is a wonder drug, or very coincidental timing, because since I took one, my nose has felt much less congested. Plus my ears and head and everything else that have felt horrible. I am hoping that they are wonder pills, and in fact the cure for the common cold. I will take more tomorrow and see how I get on. Technically I could take more now, as it was about 7 hours since I last took one, but the pharmacist told me not to take them at night as they keep you awake. Apparently. Since my sleep is always shite I don’t think risking taking one at 3am would be wise. The bad news is that my chest has been hurting today, and I am slightly concerned I may in fact have a chest infection and not just a sore throat, in which case I should possibly have got some antibiotics when I saw my GP yesterday. Although I think they have pretty limited use with chest infections so maybe it doesn’t matter. Hopefully if the congestion clears up then everything else will as well. That is the plan. By tomorrow night I will be feeling completely better, Saturday will be a nice, not ill day, and I will be feeling 100% for Sunday. I hope my body has taken the plan on board.

Today was pretty quiet. I spent the day in bed sulking about feeling ill. If it had been next week – fine. Not this week dammit. So I have taken the male route and retired to my bed and felt sorry for myself. I watched Neighbours and Home and Away and then the film Gigi. And then I had to get out of bed and stop feeling sorry for myself so that I could go and shower and wash my hair and eat my dinner and go and get my hair cut. Didn’t have anything exciting done, just a trim and layers cut back in as they had all grown out. Might go short next time, I am getting bored with long hair. Although it is useful to be able to tie it up when you can’t be arsed to wash it. In fact, I think that is the main advantage of long hair. Or it is as far as I am concerned, but then I am lazy, and when I feel crap personal hygeine takes a distinct backseat. After I got my hair cut I had to go to Sainsburys with my mum. Which was ok. I bought my magical Sudafed and got my prescription. And wandered about aimlessly looking at chocolate and stuff. As you do. I do anyway. Although I felt a bit sick so I didn’t look at it for as long as I usually would.

I am doing nothing tomorrow. I should be going to a carols rehearsal tomorrow evening, but there is no way in hell I am going to be able to sing a soprano line in anything at the moment, so it is utterly pointless. The one good thing about my song on Sunday if I am still ill, is that most of it is low enough that I belt it – it is only right near the end that I use head voice – there is actually only one note in the entire song I always sing in head voice, and that is for artistic reasons, ie it sounds more suitable, rather than because I can’t sing it in chest voice. And when I have a sore throat my head voice suffers far more than my chest voice. Although that one note in head voice is held, and it would be nice to sing it without my voice cracking of course. But it could be worse – I could have a song that is nearly all in head voice. Or a ballad. Ballads are harder to pull off when you are having problems with your voice I think. At least I have a character song. I am not really convincing myself here. I want to be better by then and not have to worry about cracking notes. Please.

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>Appointment and my sister

>The cold and sore throat are getting worse – just what I didn’t want! Woke up feeling very croaky, and have had a streaming nose all day. Also had a splitting headache, I think as a result of congestion. Distinctly unimpressed with this situation. I am just hoping that as it is only Tuesday it will all have cleared up and I will be absolutely fine by the weekend. I don’t want to make an idiot out of myself in front of lots of people. Must steam every day. Didn’t today – that was naughty. I don’t really like doing it, so I tend to put it off, but I think it helps so I must. Ditto the nasty throat lozenges. I have a show rehearsal tomorrow but I am planning to tell them that I can’t sing. Which means it is pretty pointless me going really as it is primarily a singing rehearsal, but never mind. It looks better to turn up, even if I can’t sing. And I have to be in town anyway because I have ballet as well. It is another one of those crazy nights where I am supposed to be two places at once. In fact, that is every Wednesday from now on. I always have ballet from 7:30 until 8:30, but I now also have rehearsals from now until March from 7:30 until 10. Since I sadly don’t have a time turner a la Harry Potter stylee, this means missing one, and since I am the lead in the show, it is going to be rare that I can get out of rehearsal. I am going to have to tell my ballet teacher that I will only be able to do Monday classes after Christmas until the end of March, which she will not be impressed about, as I was supposed to be doing an exam at Easter. But there is nothing I can do about it. I will go to ballet when I can on a Wednesday, but I don’t think that will be very often – strangely enough production teams tend to like their leading ladies to be at rehearsals. I also have an appointment with my GP tomorrow, just to make things even trickier time wise. I have no idea why I booked it for a Wednesday – that was a very daft idea.

Speaking of Harry Potter, I went to see the new film this evening with my mum. It was good. Better than the other films. Although there is a possibility I just think that because I have read Deathly Hallows less times than the other books, and therefore didn’t notice any changes as much, but I did think it was better than the other films. I think splitting it into two was a good move – the film of Half Blood Prince was crazy, because you just cannot fit a 600 page book into a 2 and a half hour film and expect it to work. If I hadn’t read the book I think I would have been utterly confused throughout that film. At one point tonight I had to really fight back the tears – they were in my eyes, but I knew that if I started crying it would be completely uncontrollable sobbing, in the way that it was when I watched Charlotte’s Web a couple of months ago, and I kind of wanted to avoid hysterics in the cinema. Why is it that people dying in films doesn’t upset me, but animals or creatures of some description dying can make me inconsolable? That seems to be the wrong way round really….

I saw L earlier. It went ok. I think we had cleared up quite a lot of things already via email, so it didn’t really feel awkward. We talked a bit about what had happened, although we didn’t dwell on it too much, as I think that would have been fairly pointless. I think the basic conclusion was that yes, she did let me down somewhat, as she didn’t react in the way that she ordinarily would, but I know there were reasons behind it, and I can understand why she wasn’t available for me in the usual way under the circumstances. And I think it is actually quite important for me to realise that a) nobody is perfect, and people always will let me down, however much I think of them and rely on them, and b) that relationships can be repaired – even if you are really upset about something and have been really hurt, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it needs to be the end of that relationship. You can work through things. I suppose it has kind of been a lesson in black and white thinking – people aren’t either amazing or useless with nothing in between, and one thing going wrong doesn’t have to signify the end of an entire relationship. And I think they are important things to try and remember. Not that I will remember them of course – the next time someone lets me down I will be distraught and never want to speak to them again. But hopefully over time I can learn.

My sister is unrelenting in her hatred for me. She really is very immature. Obviously there was the deleting me from Facebook incident. She hasn’t been to our house since it all happened, apart from when I haven’t been here. She hasn’t phoned the house – she has only phoned my mum on her mobile. Then she blanked me when I did see her the other day. Then today I sent her a text saying ‘What would the boys like for Christmas? Is there anything in particular that they want/need?’ and got a reply saying ‘No thankyou. Don’t bother.’ I replied saying ‘Well I will obviously bother. I just wondered if they wanted anything in particular’ but I didn’t get a reply to that. And this is all because I found it too much to look after my nephew an afternoon a week. Whilst I can see that inconvenienced her, I still don’t feel like I was being unreasonable, and I did do it for half a term, with only two days warning at the start – it wasn’t like it was something I had offered or been asked to do in advance, and had agreed to. It was thrust upon me at the last minute when other arrangements didn’t work out, and I was never once asked if I was ok with doing it – it was just expected that I would because he was my nephew. I do love my nephews, but at the same time I don’t really like children much, and I find being around them for too long difficult, and I find having responsibility for them very hard. I can do it when I am not feeling too bad, but when I am not doing well it is well beyond me. I have repeatedly said that I wouldn’t mind doing it occasionally if there were problems with the usual arrangements, but that I just cannot commit to doing it every week. Last week for example, I was in a complete and utter state on Thursday – I was feeling very suicidal, I had cancelled my appointment with L and was then regretting it immensely, I felt ill from taking too many tablets overnight on Wednesday, I was crying uncontrollably, and I was just a complete mess. There is no way I was in a fit state to look after a 5 year old boy. And that happens sometimes. And what am I supposed to do if he gets dropped off here and I am in that position? I could not look after him. I wouldn’t feel safe being in charge of him. I wouldn’t want him left with anyone who was in the kind of place emotionally that I was last week – I would absolutely not leave him with someone who I didn’t think was in a fit state to look after him, and it is no different if it is me looking after him. It would have been irresponsible of me to try and look after an energetic 5 year old boy when I was feeling like that. I do get quite out of control when I am that distressed, and I wouldn’t have been able to cover it up, and he shouldn’t have to go through that. But that is besides the point really. I just think my sister should be mature enough to accept that I don’t feel able to commit to looking after him every week and move on from that – not hold a grudge like this and refuse to speak to me.

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