Who Are You
(Before we start this post... I want to say... I have had this thing written and ready to go for two months now... but I felt "there is a message that is missing here"... so I hit save... and then ohhhhhhh I got it... I'll tell you too... read on)
WHO ARE YOU?
Great question right?!
I'm gonna Tarantino this thing and tell you the end of it and then you can either stop reading or see how I got there... Your choice.
Q: Who are you?
A: How much time you got?
Ok you can stop reading now. 😝
I know this is a question that is completely normal... but when asked on the spot... my brain goes blank...
But honestly... Is it normal? To ask that????
Let me take you back 3 years.
I was in a play that got some attention. The attention of someone higher up in my field. (Well in the field of acting, that field, because I was in a play. Makes sense right.) Now I have someone who has an interest in me asking me a laundry list of questions of things I don't have done yet and why not.
Ummmm I don't know???????? (Seriously never looked at myself that way before. Not in a sit around and do nothing way... Just not a "why aren't you doing these things right now" way.)
What I don't have done yet?
...... ummmm that's gonna be a long ass list.
But this was the person who was gonna HELP me... so I gotta start thinking like this or else I don't want IT as badly right?
(IT: the dream dangling on a carrot that you are chasing and want so badly because you're starving. And once you eat it you'll never be hungry again. *insert rolling my eyes now*)
So leaving that meeting with that person, I went home feeling like some slacking loser who wasn't up to speed on my own life. Great.
(OR didn't have the "balls" to ask or go after it....?... Who me? Balls? Who are you talking to? I feel like they're bigger then most men! Cause, well... they are. Sorry dudes, step up.)
Now... I have this person setting up meetings and trying to help me get up to the speed on where I'm supposed to be at by the time that was said by someone else that I needed to be at it by. And this hard worker will meet that deadline. Because, ya know, I'm sooooo far behind.
Did you follow all that?
Like a the good girl I am... I went to every meeting (EVERYONE) on time, rearranged my schedule and my life, switched in times at work, had a new outfit for all, and made it all happen. (Morning workouts, meal plan, bags packed for a full day out of the house and all... done and done.) I was not going to "let down" the person who was trying to help this "poor slacking soul" out. (Yeah I wrote that.)
Did you read that? .... and yeah, that was really how I felt. (Oh younger Lolo... it's ok pumpkin.)
(Side note: that person was, from their own heart, trying to do what they knew to help me... I know that. They were being nice. I'm not an asshole, I can see that. I was beyond grateful.)
Mind you, because I was acting/singing/dancing in this play (cause that's not enough... I probably should have been producing it too)... not only am I doing this play, and the rehearsals (exhausting in itself) and going to work to pay my bills (yeah those things), and missing out on my God-sister's wedding (to do all of this that "matters"), and dressing up perfectly for it all (cause that means you're talented)... I was in offices of people who don't "know me" and who want to know "why?" I haven't been "doing more" and "what would I love to do more of" (the last one isn't a horrible question, but in the rooms of these people it didn't sound like they were looking to support my answer even if I had one, or the "right" one... you get what I'm saying.)
What the "more" was my resume... And what the "why" was was my lack of choosing which thing I loved the most and wanted to focus on. And "more of" was a question of what box can we put you in because you make no sense to us.
I felt like a child who had all her toys laid out in front of her and her parents asking her to pick her favorite and then the other ones where gonna get donated to charity.... I was sooooo confused.
Ok I'm not a child anymore... I'm an adult. (At least I hope I am.) And I really like all my toys. (Please don't take them away.)
But what was even more confusing was the WAY these ADULTS were speaking to me. As if I was a child. (Showing me pictures of or speaking about clients who had all this other shit done that I didn't. That's great... but didn't they start somewhere too?)
(Another side note: am I talking about the performance LA world, yes... in this story I am... But I've had enough jobs in my life and been in different cities doing them that I know this doesn't JUST have to do with LA and LA Managers and Agents. Business is business is business. And Assholes are Assholes are Assholes... you follow.)
As a human being/an adult... Do we need to sit down and focus on what we would like to accomplish... Yes, absolutely... But why are we to be sold on the idea that someone loves something more then you? Or that you don't love it enough? Or better yet that you are so far behind?
How does this fit into what I'm talking about....
First meeting... this woman literally looked at me and said "Who are you?"
Do you want that in a sentence? Do you have a time limit? Do you need it written down? Do you even really care? Cause you're looking at me, and walked in late, and just took a deep breath that kinda sounds like you don't give a shit. Great let me answer this questions with all smiles. (btw women talking down to other women so that they feel better about themselves... 😟)
Who am I? Are you fucking kidding me.
Fine. Here we go. I'll answer this shit.
I put on my best good girl face and tone... "Well I'm a dancer from Vegas who moved out here, and I've trained with such and such, and now I'm working on this play....."
Cuts me off... "well I can't do anything with you." (I'm sure there was a "I hate Vegas" in there too. Which I never know what to do with... Honestly what do you do with that? And a "what have you been doing for years?". Ummm living???? Hosting nightlife, performing in shows and clubs... taking my Grandmother to the Dr... helping my Dad start his business... selling high end retail, helping the restaurant I work for expand their businesses... I don't know.... you need more? Cause I got it. You care?)
OK.... so what the fuck am I doing here? You saw my shit before I even got in the office. Am I supposed to thank you for your time as I leave and you wasted mine????
(And talked shit about my city???? What boring ass town are you from? Never heard of it... everyone's heard of mine...<---this is what goes on in my head. Don't disrespect my city.)
So that's how the first one went... haha 😂.
And then came the second, third, fourth, fifth... by the 10th one... my BS meter was on high. I felt like I had all the right answers for everyone in front of me, because I got better and better with all this practice to sit there and butter them up and not put myself down (or my town), and then hand them the answer they wanted, and feel like I had accomplished something. (Yeah I got better at bullshitting and lying.)
My report card that I could hand to my "Helper" was filled with good grades that I could pat myself on the back for getting. But all I was doing was cheating off the kid's paper next to me. (Aka IMDB)
I was giving them the answers I knew they wanted. Like a dude lying to a chick to get her into bed. (But I had blue balls up the ass)
I even sold myself on myself. (I'm that good of a salesman) Like "yeah I got this." But really all I started to do was create a complex of "I'm not doing enough." And "I'll make up a different me so they like me."
Oh My God!
By the time all this was over... I'm calling my mom (which I had been the whole time saying "look how busy I am and everything I'm doing, aren't you so proud at how much I do? This is why I can't be there with you.") when she's seated in Florida with my God-Family relaxing by the Atlantic, and here I am on the Pacific now in tears!!!
Wait I'm crying? Now I'm crying? Why are you crying? Don't you want this? Isn't this it? Why are you crying?
My mom confused tried to say "Sweetheart you're going after what you want and I'm so proud of you." (In true Mom support.)
Me "It's not that."
Her still confused "What is it then?" (Cause seriously, I've even bullshitted her so much that I've sold her on the lie that I'm enjoying all of this.)
Me "I feel like I haven't worked hard enough"
I'm sorry? You... Lauren Kimberly Poole feels like she what? How did it come to that?
That feeling, of going in front of person after person after person was so exhausting because I felt like no one saw me.
So you're worried about what they think of you? No... but then what is it? Ohhhh, you don't know how to think about yourself? No. But you're lying about yourself? Yes.
Is that enough to bring you to tears... Maybe.
Or are you not seeing yourself for all the beautiful qualities you are? DING DING DING!!!!!
The problem wasn't the people I was seeing and their horrible attitudes (not all, but most), or the person trying to help me, or even the fact that I was so busy (or not chilling in Miami with Mommy)... the problem was so simple...
I wanted the perfect answer for the person in front of me, I wanted to re-write my own history so that the piece of paper looked like everyone else's that "mattered", I wanted to be able to call my Mom and say that I couldn't be somewhere that actually did matter (the wedding) because I was of a certain age and I wanted to get there now.
(I'm shaking my head right now)
Needless to say... those meetings didn't land me anywhere. (Shocking I know). But it started a freight train into Me-Town.
But that train took a minute. Actually 3 years (after many a pit stop) to finally get to Lo-ville.
In that three year time lapse... what happened?
Oh let me tell ya!
A LOT OF THINGS HAVE HAPPENED.
And its not things you put on a resume. Or discuss in a meeting. Or even post on your Social Media... (Or actually maybe you do. If you're me haha.) Its the things that really start to add to your heart and soul and you're knowing that you are on your own path of YOU.
Its the "I own who I am" and "where I'm at" when I walk into every room and look people in the eye and say "I'm doing the best I can, and I'm enjoying every thing that I do." And to add to that "maybe you should too."
And MEAN IT.
What did those meetings three years ago, that summer, teach me... It taught me to stop looking at what everyone else is doing, look at what I really want to do (which at that time was be at the wedding... but I thought that if I turned down the play that meant I didn't WANT it as BADLY... but what I really wanted to do was be around my loved ones and celebrate them and still enjoy doing things I love to do when I got back) and really own WHO I AM at that MOMENT in MY life.
Yes MY life.
Who I was at that time (3 years ago) I was a hard working, love filled, well experienced in many fields of life, not taking shit in my personal life, helpful, multifaceted, educated, open to any adventure woman.
But I didn't OWN that.
So who am I????????? Now????
Let me tell you the answer that makes the most sense if I could ever give you one...
I'm stress-free, fearless, honest, hopeful, loving, boundaries galore!!!, self-respecting, accepting, working-on-all-the-above-every-second-of-my-life gal.
But if I have to pick one thing to define me.....
Q:Who are you?
A: How much time do you got? Cause I'm a lot of things boo.
Yes! I am so many parts that make up a whole. And there is no apology that I can do them all and do not want to be labeled. Boxed in. I don't wear one name tag, or have one business card... I got boxes upon boxes of them from all over. And I'm damn proud of em.
My cup runneth over with gifties of greatness. But my younger self didn't recognize that yet. My greatness.
We all have old selves that (if we honestly look back on...) we can see what lesson we needed to learn.
Oh and I learned my lesson from that time period.
I was a bad ass doubting my Dopeness because I didn't see my own Dopeness but I wanted everyone else to tell me I had it in me. (No wonder I was crying... my Dopeness's feelings were hurt 😭)
The feelings and the emotions... they still get their place in this... But I don't stress out about the one meeting, or the one text, or the "is it ever gonna happen", or the "if I do it this way."
And a huge waste of your precious time. And it truly is boring as fuck.
Dope people do not stress. They decompress... listen to their gut, and accept the flow that their life has taken.
I could now get those 10 meetings, and walk into every single one in jeans and a t-shirt and think "fuck it, let's see how this goes today." Have a great time, know I am enough, and leave going on to the next dope moment.
And then keep it moving.
No tears, no stress, no report card... and no need for feedback because my gut already gives me my own.
So much easier right!
So what am I trying to say here with this all.... WHO ARE YOU?
You are an ever changing, perfect where you're at right now, listening to your gut, respecting your own path, bad ass BOSS, who is not going to close themselves off to any possibility of the magic of life.
Open your mind, see beyond what "everyone else" is doing. See, believe, and know that you can (like we used to hear as kids) do ANYTHING you want at any given time.
(Which being like everyone else isn't interesting. Cause then... you're like everyone else.)
-You don't owe anyone anything
-You aren't one thing
-You are amazing right here and now
And in the words of two NWA members... "They like it great, if they don't, fuck em" (DJ Yella)... and even better... "Ain't nobody gonna tell me how to do ME" (Ice Cube).
All my love to you all,