Well, last night was my final level 2 class at the Annoyance. While I’m really sad that it has ended, I am very much looking forward to level 3! I do wish I were moving on with everyone from my level 2 class, though, because they’re such fun people to play with. Even though it took me about six or seven weeks to get comfortable…I did eventually get comfortable, and I hope that I can take that to level 3 with me, or just learn to adapt faster to some different classmates.
The last few people finished up their Gauntlets (the final bits where we performed 9 scenes in a row with 9 different people), and then we got our notes in front of everyone. I was pretty freaked out about this all day, mostly because something is just wrong with my brain lately. I’m way too anxious or depressed or upset for no reason(ish), even when I know that I should not be. I have been randomly bursting into tears, which is really irritating, especially when you’re not particularly sad about anything, and so I was concerned that I might randomly do that in class. I think it’s partially because I’ve recently switched my lady medicines, and I’m not going to go into much detail here, but having a vagina is a huge pain sometimes because I’m not fucking crazy, but my birth control is making me insane. Also, all the absurdity that’s occurred lately hasn’t really helped.
Enough about that.
We were all given feedback on things that we did well, and challenges for things to work on. I wrote down everyone’s “things to work on,” even if they didn’t pertain to me, because I feel like it’s important to be aware of everything. The notes for someone to play a larger range of emotions, for example, is always something that I can keep working on, so why not take note of it? Keep yourself in check. You can always do better than what you’re already doing, you know?
The notes that I got were really not bad at all. I was expecting a shitstorm. In my head all day, I assumed that my evaluation would go like this:
“Everyone is good at something. One day, you’ll figure out what your something is. It isn’t this, though.”
I’d like to think that years of being told that I wasn’t good enough, I wasn’t trying hard enough, and that I was downright hated would be past me by now, but considering how fucking weird my brain is being, I have taken all of that negative and kept its voice too close to my heart. When I get a compliment, I can’t take it. I hate getting compliments because I don’t know what to do with them. I think you’re just saying it to try to make me feel better even though we both know I’m the worst. Or you want something. I wish I were passed this by now. I wish it didn’t drive me the way it does, to try new things only to make me beat myself up in the end. I wish that negativity and years of bullshit didn’t phase me anymore. I wish certain types birth control didn’t make it worse by amplifying all of the bad and making women raging shewolves. Because sometimes, I am maybe an awesome person sometimes! But most of the time, I really hate myself.
Here’s what really happened during my evaluation:
I was told that I was funny and really good at pulling from real life. I keep the scenes in check, more or less, and was told “you’re really good at this (improv), but I’m not sure that you know that.” I need to work on grabbing more absurd situations not blending into scenes.
That was not so bad. I wish my self-hatred wasn’t so obvious, though. Or, is it good to not know that you’re good at something? I don’t want a big ego when it comes to improv, but is that what’s hurting me? Do I have no faith in myself?
There have been times when I have believed people when they’ve told me I had a great show. Those are the shows that I have so much fun in, that afterwards, I can’t remember what happened. The ones I’ve done with One-Way Ticket were like that. A few Really Special People shows were like that. The first longform show I ever did, where Big Fat and Stealthy just called everyone on stage who wanted to play with them before they retired, was like that! Nothing against Nothing I’m Proud Of, but I still don’t understand fully why I was on that team. Occasionally I’d have good scenes, but most of the time I was shit.
There are certain instances when I’m on stage, and it is just me and my scene partner (s), and I am not aware of anyone else being in the room. I am not me, and my scene partner isn’t themself. And we are kicking some serious ass, having a good time, and doing some fucking improv. 25-30 minutes later, someone pulls our lights and suddenly everyone else is back and life is normal again. Out of the trance, back to real life. That’s a part of why I do improv. I want that feeling all the time, that “nothing else matters except THIS” feeling.
Level 3 begins in the first weekend of December. I’m really looking forward to continuing on this journey of acceptance and comedy. Improv is by far the best form of therapy I have ever had, even with all of my self-doubt and “I suck at life!” proclamations.
I appreciate that you put up with my bullshit. Get ready for more!!!