Friday, November 27, 2009

A Note of Thanks!

This is a day where we look back and remember what we are thankful for and I have alot which comes to mind. First and foremost to have all of my immediate family still here by my side healthy and celebrating another thanksgiving with food, quality time, and good times.

As for my friends, we may not all be in the same city but you are in my heart every day and with the holiday nearing I know we will get to make up for lost time. For the ones who are newly acquainted and or local I am thankful to have found you in my life.

Professionally I could write a book on how much there is to be thankful for however this year along there is much to remember and thank including all of the continued support in all of our film projects and our work, for a great film partner, for a great audience who continues to support our local screenings and cheer us on as we go international and into other markets with our work, to those that have guided us from day one and never left our side, and to our fellow brothers and sisters in the industry who continue to pave the way with there passion and hard work, and to our amazing city of San Antonio, our back drop and best supporter of all.

To all of my FB friends who provide an excellent source of dialogue and even support as life happens all around us. Hope you all enjoy your day weather you are kicking back or working hard at what you do I am truly thankful for you in my life!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

When I wake and Before I Dream....

It’s all simple enough right? We wake up. We go to sleep. In between we occupy our time usually working, providing for ourselves, spend time with co workers, colleagues, if we are lucky maybe family and or a significant other. Some of us may even dare to pursue our hopes and dreams and hopefully feed our soul as much as our bodies. A lot of time is spent driving from point A to point B, but what happens when you wake up one morning and it just doesn’t seem that easy anymore? I think that happened to me a few months back and I can not exactly pin point the day to be exact but it was almost as if I was emotionally paralyzed and anything beyond Waking up and going to sleep seemed like climbing Mount Everest.

Going back a bit to this time last year everything seemed to be falling into place like I had hoped. Professionally I could not ask for a better progression in my career and with those whom I worked with. Every film we worked hard on seemed to be well received either through winning film festivals to screening at Cannes and planning the next big step which is selling and distributing our feature.

Doors just kept opening up left and right and opportunities that were bigger than I had ever imagined seemed to present themselves. It was not just about me. It was trying to provide the actors who I had believed in with great representation and making sure they were taken care of, standing by my colleagues as we worked hard to pass our film incentive, promoting our films to larger markets than ever before, and on top of all that taking on producing a film festival that had provided me with many opportunities which I wanted to be bigger than ever before. As far as I was concerned as long as I had a bit of energy I was positive all of the above would flourish as long as I put my heart and soul into every project.

From March until the end of the summer it all seemed like one blur of details, mixers, preparations, submissions, business trips, festivals, etc. I had a lot of great people I could count on and work on with and with that being said everything seemed to go as planned. Overnight though I felt as if the rug was pulled right from underneath me. Although this blow at first seemed easy enough to brush off and move on I did not realize until much later that this action would go on to build up internally like a laceration which kept bleeding all summer.

It’s interesting the people that can come into your life when you’re not looking that can be a bit of sunshine in an otherwise overcast season. I am a big sucker for liking the “first” moments when this rare occasion occurs. The first smile, the first smirk, the first joke, first date, first surprise, first well you get the picture. Most important when this happens you think…Could this be real? So you dip your toe into the water and like the way it feels and the way it makes you smile in the morning, the way it gets you excited about something aside from the above goals outlined earlier in the year. Call me old fashioned but I love to court. Its not a matter of giving a flower, a gift, a surprise, but making someone else’s day and making them feel a fraction as special as there attention and attraction makes you feel.

Having to put that off to the side and let it marinate and see what would come of it I dove into what would be the center of the whole year for me. There was a lot that occurred mostly positive at first. I was glad that so much positive energy came from this event that that the numbers had nearly doubled and everyone was off and running for a memorable weekend. The week that followed seemed to be one detail after another, but the work itself was not the challenge the real one came much later.

I thought from the outside look in all went well. That that did not go well I thought was handled with dignity and tact and everything else that was a complaint was never said to my face and I knew no matter the outcome the highest trees get the wind and locally I was sure that would be placed on me. It wasn’t that it was much more though….

I have always been aware of my surroundings and have a great judge of character. In fact, within a minute or two I can tell if a person is being honest, or real, and trust worthy with me. Being able to switch hats on and off from colleague to friend producer to agent to supervisor is no problem at all. However when those whose opinions you value and see eye to eye with seem to take a low road it can be disheartening to be around. More so it can be very cold in an otherwise hot environment when you feel as if despite all you did to provide opportunities and all the effort you put into an event does not matter when egos are bruised.

I was able to roll with the punches despite the cold shoulders and negative energy in my direction then one morning it was just as I had mentioned. I woke up and I could not function. Emails and Phone calls would send me in a state of panic. Days seemed to go by before my eyes. Everything that I had worked so hard for seemed to be put on hold indefinitely. I did not know what had happened. The idea of even doing simple tasks seemed to put a ton of pressure on my chest and made breathing and concentrating seem like sprinting for hours on end in freezing temperatures.

It took a lot of deep thought and self analyzing to try and figure out how this happened in the first place and more importantly how to get out of whatever type of mental meltdown this was so I could go back to doing what brought me the biggest joy,,, my work. Everyday I was mentally paralyzed I felt my reputation was being tarnished and my plans which I had set in motion were going stagnant.

Thank god for my family for just letting me be a bump on a log and figure this out for myself. Of course they were there when I needed someone to talk to but I am normally someone who gets stir crazy when I have more than a day or two to myself.

What about my friends?

That’s a good question. The ones I have are great! A lot are no longer here in Texas which I give them kudos for going for the dreams and succeeding at it. The ones I have here though well it gets even more complicated.

It’s hard for me not to be a good friend….but sometimes its bad for me to be friends with people who take and never give back. I even think its far better to know who is not your friend then who your friends are. If you think about it and name a few friends you have off the top of your head those are the people who I am sure are there when you need someone to talk to, who like you for who you are not what you do, and are there for you through the thick and thin. A quote by Marilyn Monroe resonated with me around this time which is “If you can’t handle me at my worst, than you do not deserve me at my best.” I consistently have to re-evaluate my friends unfortunately but fortunately enough it is good to know who these people are. I did make huge adjustments to no longer have any pillars in my life. I need to be sure that despite where I am at in my life I can always stand on my own two feet and not need to worry about whom will catch me if I fall metaphorically again.

Despite this I was able to be open to chase after that little bit of sunshine which came around unexpectedly earlier in the summer. However chasing is what ended up being the problem. I must be too old fashioned or too Aries for my own good but I will go along for a ride if I think it will lead to something promising in the end. Long story short, after a few dates and a lot of disappointments I took a hint and continued down my single road. This really isn’t a bad place to be right now especially around the holidays.

I do not know when it came full circle but I am glad that my goals and ambitions are even bigger than they were this time last year. The rest of my 09 will be focused on wrapping up what was put on hold to make room for what 2010 has in store.

I do not believe in looking back but I needed to move on from this year which although may have taken me to places which were unpleasant to visit helped me shift to a place that is more honest and is more real. My optimism is not diminished in the least in every aspect in my life. I never fully close a door just wise up when opportunity comes knocking which I am sure it will continue to.

I do not regret any action I have taken or will continue to take down this road in life I just look forward to the journey between the time I wake up and go to sleep at night.