Kindred Full Circle

Mike was my hero and his death destroyed me. It capped off a lifetime of loss. All of my life had been spent around power and turmoil and drama. It was luxurious; full of dirty money and prescription drugs. Mike made me see how petty the overages of life were. I focused in on the subject of reforming foster care because of what I learned about his life. I’m still recovering from my early existence, having been deprived of my parents at young ages due to separate suicides. The gross of my experiences were nothing compared to his. 90% of children and teens in foster or systematic care have tragically similar stories.

Mike and I bonded immediately. We had one very intimate thing in common. Both of our fathers were out of their minds. They each tried to kill us.

The accident was exactly that. It took everyone completely by surprise. 19-year-old Mike being killed in a car crash wasn’t even on my radar. He had only had a forever home for three years. God I was mad at God. I thought that this was it. After everything I had to live through, I thought doing a documentary about the sides of foster care, emphasizing how to reform it was my mission. As soon as I got involved, I felt chosen. Like I had a true purpose and it was bigger than I ever imagined. 

Initially I channeled my grief into working on the project but I had lost my editor. I continued to try to keep up my blog and my social media posts. It felt so empty I stopped. The rug got pulled out from under me in a way that hurt worse than my mother dying days before my wedding.

I helplessly sank lower. With an added painful medical diagnosis, it was awful. Whereas I had felt like the universe was conspiring in my favor, I lost my faith in anything intangible. Anger, pain and negative feelings came up whenever I thought about it. I tried but couldn’t even watch my own footage. I spent the next two years on the couch.  

The past few years have been a blur. I’m still coming out of it. My energy level is starting to pick up. Covid profoundly challenged the climb. How must this entire socio-political climate impacted the situation? My mind turns constantly. Especially when I don’t want it to. The price of my faith being restored. As it turns out, the universe does have a job for me. I have to embrace my natural talents to be a yenta and a disrupter. To get loud about advocacy and finish my documentary because it is important. I used to think that I owed it to Mike. The truth is I owe it to myself to follow through on what I know to be true. Mike opened my eyes and woke my soul. 

There are hundreds of thousands of kids that my voice can help. Even if it is only one person, one life positively affected because I shot my mouth off, it’s an honor. 

I feel like a vessel for divine purpose again. The thoughts I have are mindfully more positive and I strive for good, happy feelings now. Every morning I pray. In my own way. I made my peace to the best of my ability. The power I am praying to is everything. The universe, nature, a divine entity and my guardian angels including Mike. I have the opportunity to do something important. I feel ready for further instructions. All of my beloved dead will dance in celebration. I found my voice. Books and film are a platform for reaching masses. Now, I must decide what to do with it next.

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Gone Too Long

I find that I’m having trouble sleepig or concentrating and the reason has to be that I haven’t  been writing anything beyond lyrics and some poems. It’s very difficult for me to want to write; I feel like the last thing I devoted my writing to along with my heart blew up in my face. I spent so much time studying the foster care system and Mike’s case in particular. I can tell you how long he was at residences, what drugs they had him on, the abuses he had suffered. As I learned them they burned themselves into my brain. The shock was hard to absorb.

It took me a year to get comfortable with the subject matter enough to go and start raising awareness and money to make a documentary and book about the experience. Then when he died in June of 2016, it took my legs right out from under me and sent me swirling into a tirade of profanity at the sky. Michael was only 19 and didn’t hook up with Rachel and Tyson, his parents, until he was sixteen and I feel like that three years of love is not nearly enough for what he endured in this world.

It leaves me in a quandry as to what to do with myself. I can’t seem to digest this loss. I’ve worked through it in therapy and talk openly with his mom when we need to, but I have this bereft feeling nothing takes away. Having lost both of my parents was hell but to lose a child I love is the worst feeling I ever had. And it didn’t make any cosmic sense. I got the money, I made the project; it was all meant to be except nobody was supposed to suddenly die. Especially the flamboyant beating heart of Kindred.

Without the business acumen or ability to edit solo, I’m rather stuck. Rachel saw to so much of the details and she now is nursing her new son into her home environment. She and her mate planned never to adopt again but life had other plans and they are now the proud parents of a 17 year old boy. They tell him all about Mike and he is very much a part of the family and is called the big brother. Rachel, for what she does for others, is truly one of my heroes.

As far as the project, I blame myself for us not having been further along when Mike passed. That I didn’t have a rough draft to show him before he died and my guilt is immense. I know that several things went sideways getting the post production solidified. Rachel had huge assignments at her full time job running a food bank and I was in and out of the hospital. We figured we can always finish it in time for next years festival circuit. It’s true, nothing fucks you harder than time.

So now I’ve been in a depressed state for months. There are several reasons but number one is my status in this project I took money for and made promises on. If only I could count on my my teenager who is a producer already to help but he’s got two jobs over summer then a full senior year course load, so I will learn how to edit. I said I would before but I was intimidated. It would be so much easier to have someone else help but if there is one moral in this story is there is no easy way out. You have to learn and do and feel for yourself. You have to fight through the pain. I have to believe that one day my heart will begin to heal and the memories of Mike and his inspiration for Kindred and my involvement with helping kids will bring tears of joy.

Until then I have to be brave and get my ass back into my work. It’s been long enough. Warriors don’t leave things like this undone and if Mike saw me as anything, I was a warrior for good. So that’s who I need to be now. And remember why I did all this in the first place; because almost half a million kids are languishing in hellish limbo and they need everyone they have to sound the alarm.

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So this happened…

Wow I didn’t realize how much I missed writing until just now. I’ve been feeling weak and unable to concentrate long enough to make it through a sentence. It’s being handled by professionals but without major surgery, there’s no end in sight to my physical pain. My emotional pain can often be more crippling; causing me to seize up, fold in on myself and withdraw from life. That is common to many people with anxiety/depression when they are mentally overtasked or experience extended periods of the worst symptoms of the disease.

Lucily I am working with a wonderful therapist who knows how to engage me and integrates my husband or son into some of our sessions. She’s truly a credit to the profession I had washed my hands of; therapy. With her help, I stepped though the fear and am facing myself and what I am passionate about. Dealing with the things I cannot change but are constant challenges. It’s frustrating and scary at times. No matter how much I think I’ve evolved, I’ve backslid due to physical reasons kicking off PTSD symptoms. One was a sexual assault that happened about 20 years ago I never properly processed. Or reported to officials because I knew the retrobution it world bring. I didn’t come from a traditional family; I came from THE family. With that burden, I knew without a doubt the moment they learned what happened, people would be dispatched to rape and torture him to death. Mobbed-up guys really don’t like it when you try to rape their little prinesses. I couldn’t live with that, so I had to protect this junior varsity semi-celeb Jeremy Piven or nothing I said or did would’ve stopped his execution.

Instead, I told my closest friends about the attack at the time it happened. As time went on, I told everyone I knew, anybody who would listen. Including the younger brother of my HS boyfriend. He’s come onto me for years and we joked a bit but mostly I just ignore it. We’re really only friends on fb. Once I saw him a few years ago because I needed a ride home from the airport. But I’ve been having some extreme PTSD symptoms of late and not thinking with as much caution as usual. The other day, this little putz decides he’s going to get a rise out of me and sadly, he did.

After some verbal insults that were uncalled for and crowing about his doing so well and dining with celbrity chefs on fb messenger. I told him I didn’t care. I was raised around money and spent the early 90’s in LA, celebrity doesn’t impress me. In fact, I’ve turned them all down. I wasn’t impressed, so he types “Jeremy Piven says hi.” I asked what?! How could you bring that up? He hurt me and tried to rape me. I mean it was malicious, what other motivation could explain such behavior? Fuck you and your money, leave me alone was my response and I don’t know why but trying to explain how bad what he did was. He said I was always bragging about it, that’s how ignorant this nimrod is. And so pathetic to go there. I contacted his brother and let him know what was going on and can he please help me stop it. No response. Tried several times as my anger intensified. I texted to please just re that he saw the messages. Nothing. It really set me off. Then I saw my texts turn from blue like iphone to iphone to green with the ‘sent as text message’ tag. I never treated him with anything but respect.

I called my sister and told her. She in turn told me that this little creep said we hooked up while I was married, on the ride from the airport he claims I manually serviced him and then did more at the apartment. All I could see is red. Even if it were not about my marriage, I still would never, ever touch him in a sexual way. We talked about sex once; since he was always trying to engage a sexual conversation I asked if he really wanted to have sex with me or just the girl you saw with your brother during puberty? I meant are you serious because it will never happen.

Admittedly, I’ve had a lot of drugs administered in my day, but never thorazine or ruffies and that’s what it would take for the little man to even have a chance with me. It set off all the ptsd alarms at once. I started shaking. I began to ignore the incoming messages; including one claiming he complained to fb about me and they should check my account due to telling him to fuck off. I hope someone does look me up; maybe they are meant to raise awareness too and will see exactly what I stand for.

This idiot picked the wrong person to mess with and intentionally make an enemy. How dare anyone, least of all a man who never experienced it, throw a sexual assault in someones face saying they bragged about it. I’ve told a LOT of people and not one thought I was bragging. What was I bragging about? Was that about the crazy childhood where I was being prepared what to do if I’m kidnapped, how to kill someone with things in any bathroom at around 5 and lived in paranoia or that I had to choose to prevent a murder of the guy who violently tried to rape me?

It was the worst possible timing for me to be abe to just blow this off. I’m already in hormonal free fall as many are from the coming eclipse. Plus I had to report a child abuse case, I’m in terrible pain and can barely even write. However, nothing holds my attention like outrage and I guess I have to thank Mark for getting me mad enough to fight through my condition right now and find out what legal recourse I have. And I made it clear that he, knowing about the ptsd, my assualt and both my parents suicides would be criminally negligent with intentional infliction of emotional distress lying about me in print to my sister who saved the messages which is both slander and laible or outright trying to get me to hurt myself. And I keep thinking it, he really went for blood, so yes I am safe but can’t take anymore. Nobody seems to understand how hard it is not to just end it when I’m suffering this badly. But that’s not my path. I so badly want to run down this path, knowing my parents are at the end of it. Children of suicides have some rediculously high rate of killing themselves.

I’m struggling as it is and I refuse to take anybody’s shit. He picked the absolute worst timing. Plus I’m an advocate and activist for myself as well. I cannot change the past but I can make my present however I want it to be. Ill or not, I made a comittment to myself I would see this through, both Kindred about foster care reform and the two other subjects we know too much about; sexual assault and suicide. For myself too. Why would I allow this nobody to get any space in my mind? But I couldn’t help it. It took over and did actual damage. Damage that is all his fault. This is part of purging it and on a public setting, more people will see it.

As tough as it gets, I’m built and programmed to survive it. As furious as I am, I do see how loathsome he is and that lie was pathetic. You must be emotionally bankrupt to torment anyone; especially someone who knows I’ve been public about how tenuous my health has become.  I refuse to carry this one second longer and am purging here instead. Besides he’s always been the Fredo of the family. That doesn’t mean his behavior is excusable, but I won’t torture my ex for the sins of his brother. I have to prioritize my issues and this is one not worth my precious energy.

After this, I will do my best to let it go. Only I have this really ugly streak I seem to have been born with and it’s my temper. It leads me to rightious indignation. Usually I keep it on a leash but it’s broken free of that restraint. All I can do is use my artistic skill to give myself some closure. And muzzle myself from here on out; until its time for me to get interviewed about sexual assaults and one of the reasons women don’t come forward. Being belittled or embarrassed, but that’s all crap. I did nothing to get assaulted and certainly don’t deserve to being taunted with it.

The view from the high road is beautiful but not as satisfying as imagining him being trampled or burned with wildfire or as a snack for a dragon. Yes I watch a lot of Game of Thrones. If I honor myself and what is for my greatest good, I must forget about this stupidity and focus on my purpose. Please send some love and strength as I am facing a mountain of challenges so high I can’t even see the top. So I’ll focus my steps on the climb and not what’s awaiting at the summit. Even if it means standing on his pinhead to get a foothold, I will transcend. I’ll let karma sort out the rest.


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For a variety of reasons, it’s time to end this blog and begin the next phase of it’s and my development. Did it all really happen? It can feel so surreal. I’ve experienced the highest highs and the lowest lows, sincerely and comparitively speaking. My God. The idea originated as doing Mike’s story as his baby shower gift. In learning most of it, I found we had something very unique in common; both of our biological fathers had tried to kill us. Mine was a paranoid schizophrenic and his a violent alcoholic, but it is uncommon.

That’s one heavy stone to bond over, but it soon became the foundation for Mike’s trust in me and our conversations. It was the footing for intimacy in sharing personal experiences. I remember thinking more than once when speaking to him that this was proof that there is a God, he and I survived. Despite all of the odds, we survived; it had to be for a reason. I do the best I can to hold onto that while I do my best to be the kind of person who never questions if they love themselves. Not greed or indulgence but actual love, the healthy kind. Mike passing in such a sudden fashion has made me question everything.

There have been a series of medical issues that have been plaguing me for months. I can write in almost any condition but servere pain robs me of perspective. It’s like holding a loaded gun in your hands; it’s impossible to not be consumed by it, it becomes impossible to think of anything else. Now, we’ve passed the holidays and today is my 45th birthday. Wow. Honestly, I’m amazed that I made it. Almost every circumstance to lower the chances of my survival have befallen my life yet I’m too damned stubborn to give up. Life is what I make of it and I have some wonderful ideas, I’m so very grateful to be here to implement them.

The greatest honor of my life is and will always be being a mother. I haven’t always been the mother I wanted to be but I do the best I can. My son is the most precious thing in the world to me and I’m truly in awe of the fact that I brought such a good hearted person into this world. No matter what he ends up doing, I know he will always be doing something to help others. He is the reason I was born, but there are so many things I love and get to go back into doing now that he is in his mid-teens.

But first on the list is to celebrate today! 45 years ago today the whitest baby you ever saw was born in the most unlikely place in America, the Washoe reservation in Reno, NV. And I think of my parents with a happy heart; I know how loved and wanted I was. I’m blessed to have had my parents. Nothing was normal or traditional, but they cared. They loved me more than themselves. Learning all I have in the process of researching and producing the interviews; it’s heart wrenching how many people don’t come into the world loved.

The day we got our 9000 donation and the days that followed were some of the absolute happiest I have ever experienced and I must again thank our anonymous donor. It was a wonderful feeling; so excited and hopeful. I celebrate that again today. I celebrate the brave family that got me here. I celebrate the glorious friends I have found. I celebrate that anything is possible and while we have yet to finalize what we wish to do with our interviews; it’s because of Mike that I took off on a tear to raise awareness about foster care. I celebrate him and his life as well, knowing him changed my entire way I chose to exist and I’m so grateful for it.

This must wrap up to make room for what is next, whatever that is. Even when I plan it, I know I’m just scribbling on the universe in pencil; life will do what it wants to do. I guess the key is living fully in those moments we do have control of and we have conrtol of most of them. In this moment I choose my music, my drink, my location, my attitude and my day to celebrate the anniversary of the day my beautiful mother brought me into the word. If people dislike the term birthday, that’s cool but I enjoy it. I worked hard to traverse the obstacle course I was born into and all things considered, I choose to be proud of myself. My scales are heavily tipped to good and there is so much more good work to be done. In our new normal, my partner and I must find our ways to be the people we are to become. I will love and be there for her everyday of our lives. All my beloved dead will dance here today in celebration of a woman who found she has a voice and platform for reaching masses and now, must decide to do with it next.

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A Requiem for The Survivors Club

I have a unique roster of the closest, amazing people in the world to me, but in fairness I live in a unique world. The only reqirement for membership is that you have to have experienced a loss or trauma so great that it basicaly killed the life you built and knew replacing it with the catch all phrase ‘The New Normal’. The kind of stuff where when you tell someone for the first time, their face muscles all just drop and they usually instinctivly cover their mouths out of shock. We used to think we had seen or been through it all, I don’t think any of us will be saying that again. Life throws some wicked curve balls. But we all know, even through the tears, is that the only way to truly survive is to live in love and celebrate the people and things with and no longer with us.

Life is not fair, there is no getting around it. I do believe in a purposeful universe but fairness has nothing to do with that. None of us did anything to deserve the kind of unanesthetized slices that cut through us, severing our hearts, souls and minds. Yet they happened and nothing can reverse it. I’ve been dealing with that all of my life or, avoiding dealing with it is more like it. Even in my pain, I know I really have nothing to bemoan or desire. It’s true that when you can’t breathe, nothing else matters. Watching my beloved friend enduring the loss of her son 6 months ago, it cuts through everything else and reminds you what is truly important. Being the best us we can be for ourselves and our loved ones and valuing the little things.

So what I used to think of as The Survivors Club I now choose to think of as The Healers Club. We have the insight and power to help ourselves and countless others by showing that if you just carry on, you’ll find the path you need to follow. Letting go of the pain and the fear is actually scary in and of itself because it is so familiar. That’s fine, I accept it but I’m letting go anyway. Everyday, life offers the opportunity to improve or even completely change your life. I’ve wasted so many of them that being present has become priority. That’s not an easy task, I’m an over thinker. It’s not as easy as saying just don’t think about it. Elizabath Gilbert was right when she said that your thoughts can be selected just like your clothes and that’s a power you can cultivate. It takes work and patience and faith that happiness is still attainable, but I believe it is.

The change in words may seem trivial, but it actually holds the key to it all. Perspective is everything. If I think of myself as a healer and not a survivor, my focus will be on what good things I can do for myself and not lost in thought about the things that make me sad, that I survived. More than that, none of us give ourselves enough credit for not just surviving the event but clawing and climbing through it to save ourselves. We are warriors in our own ways and deserve to be proud. What you focus on expands, my focus is on healing and loving and embracing my passions. Appreciating the people and comforts I take for granted. Being a warrior of light in whatever way I am able. Not because I need to but because I want to.

So with an open mind and a fragile but open heart, I go into this holiday season in profound gratitude. My bestie is coming to spend it with me and my family at Disney World, I accomplished major goals I set for myself, I’ve been a steadfast friend and advocate whenever needed. I have a family that loves me of more than just my blood. I have every reason in the world to want to heal and help heal others. It will be a process of diverting my energy and attention to the positives until it becomes automatic, and it doesn’t even have to be a battle. If I go with the current and relax, I believe it will keep me moving in the right direction.


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What can be said about the past six months; it’s been surreal and surreal is a place I know well from my mother’s sudden death when I went from sheltered and financially dependent due to medical reasons; to a world collapse. Mike passing reminded me of that kind of shock and the sensations in brings up in me. I’ve re-established with a good NYU trained psychiatrist and a therapist the does cognitive, hypnosis and can do emdr but is reasearching it more. He explained to me that it’s a great therapy for a single trauma but considering the large number I have, it could make it worse. But it’s very cool he comes to my home. This week we are doing a two hour so we have time to get into a meditative state and work on whatever comes up.

This being the holidays, I’m in a generous mood. My son tests that often, putting in the absolute least effort required at home. At school he really participates and I’m grateful for that. Why do some boys get it that they need to keep neat and others who find genius in chaos? I have the latter but he’s 15, I want him to be 15. A bit more responsibly than he has done, but the foundation for being able to go out into the world and take care of himself. At his age, I was having consentual sex so please, I’m totally grateful for the reverse in his genetic engine. It’s just time he began to truly transition. Despite it all I’m going to miss him terribly. He’s been my world since the day I knew he was coming. In the basest term, I’m grateful I have my son here with me. I have to force myself not to think about it but the truth is life can change in an instant. And does.  I suppose I’m feeling what would be called an identity crisis but I know who I am and what my plans are after he is in school; writing full-time and getting back into acting, at least commercials. My look finanly seems popular as the “young mom catagory age”.

I’m pretty medicated right now. No bother in saying on which, but I have a vapor pen nearby. So, I’ll be totally honest. I’m terrified to do some of these therapies exercises. My fear is so wired in, he asked me to describe a world without it and aside from the fantasy  rainbows and gumdrops, I couldn’t. It’s that deep in me. But confronting it is one of the hardest, intimidating and most necessary thing’s I’ve ever done. Be so as it may. I’m facing it in a new way than before. I know that I can handle it and complete the project, with Rachel’s help on it on whatever level she is comfortable. I’m so proud of her and her spouse Tyson; you baffle me daily with your perseverance. I hold you both in my heart along with Mike, who will be occupying a special place in my soul.

I’m afraid, I’m really afraid but I’m facing myself anyway.And I want to be a good person. Even really good ones slip from time to time. I recently ratted out a woman who has attacked me by saying I faked a miscarriage, demanded my exclusion from events and demeaned my child for years from calling him a pussy, gay, letting him watch adult programming and reading a text out loud that I privately sent to her and that’s how my kid found out his only grandma was dead, because she read my private coorespondence in front of two other adults present and two kids. 

Maybe one day I’ll get past it but for now, I caught her sneaking around with another man, other than she wrecked two homes to have. I knew and I waitied and waited and suppressed the rage but eventually boom. I finally told her boyfriend and said I was sorry but I would have trouble keeping that secret for a friend, much less her. And I was wrong. I was angry so I took it out on someone who, yes deserves it, but was not my place and not worth it. Keep it simple Amy, you get wound easily enough. And an out breath.

I’m far, far from perfect. Admittedly. Yet I really do try. I care everyday and genuinely want to make this world a better place than I found it. I’m everything I’ve survived; murder attempt, suicides, complete medical reconstruction, sexual assault but I haven’t really fully dealt with the grief of those incidents. It’s time to walk through the fire to get to my next phase of being. And rid myself of these emotional weights forever.

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I should know better than to make any public exclamations. It’s almost certain that something will go wrong. So allow me to amend, I hope to complete 10 posts by New Years, but writing has been hard recently. In everything, my health must come first. The spiritual injuries I experienced that I thought I had let go of came roaring up with a vengeance. While the accident was like emotional sand paper, what I’m feeling isn’t about that. It’s about the issues that were layers like sedimentary rock under pills and pot and stories I told myself about why I am the way I am and why I do the things I do. The time has come for me to truly deal with these issues before they dispatch me.

Whatever your trigger issue, deal with it as young and as fully as possible. Some meds help really well in the short run but they are addictive both phyisically and psychologicaly. When used over years, it begins to lose it’s potency. Besides I want to be able to be self-reliant in all respects; especially when it comes to stress and sleep. I tortured myself into ulcerative colitis, I have to stay as serene as possible or I could get sick again. I already have pain every single day to some degree.

I know that I’m strong, that’s obvious if I’ve now made it to almost 45, and while my life is hardly the streets of Calcutta, it can be a rough ride. My sleep is abnormal for so many reasons, it’s one of my biggest challenges. My nervous system has a hard time shutting down and my mind is constantly active. But none of that matters if I’m not fully present to enjoy it. Or constantly altered or possibly dead. Accidents happen very easily as I found out with my mom. One of the happy side effects of the meds, and pot is a medication, is that they screw with your short term memory sometimes. I stop and do the purse, phone, keys check unconsciously as I’m finding.

Thanksgiving week was a real challenge. I was hardly sleeping; some nights not at all. I don’t do well without sleep. That’s not a superpower I posses, as far as I know. Then my head will mess with me and random things will send me on a thought tangent. Weird. Plus, I’m usually aware of it happening so I do my meditation breathing and exercises until I’m frustrated by the lack of any lasting effect. It has to be connected to a fear deep inside of me. The irational fear that I’m not safe. So many events in my life have been like shark attacks. They come from out of nowhere and just pulverize you until a chunk is missing. Now while that sucks, it’s not happening now yet still freaks me out. There’s no need for me to feel it anymore. Besides, if and when I am in real trouble again, a clear, calm mind will help me while fear will just make it worse.

So what is the disconnect? I have the insight but am struggling to truly internalize it. Through the course of this process, I’ve seen a couple of therapists and psychiatrists because the graphic nature of the facts of foster care can be very jarring to the sensitive. Now I’m starting with new ones hoping they can teach me how to behavioral modify my habits that no longer serve my greatest good. I’m seeking out someone who specializes in EMDR, a form of therapy that uses eye movement for desensitization. It can’t hurt and if I’m commited to unblocking myself for good, I have to incorporate new techniques.

People are so judgemental. I admit I can be too but I really try not to be. So this is an excellent exercise in letting go of what others think. With no parents alive, that deep seeded need for approval is a hard drug to kick. It always makes me laugh when people make the assumption that I have my shit together. In some areas I do but honestly, none of us really do. Everybody has something they “deal” with. I’m constantly reminded of how image effects perception. My closest friends have always said that my looks work against me more than for me. Nobody should be judged by how they look. In my community, the women treat me terribly.

I’ve volunteered at school and on field trips and organized back to school rallies, hell I put together a memorial for a boy who comitted suicide that I didn’t even know just to help his family and I have never had relationships with any of their men despite the persistent attention and even offers of gifts and money. Yet I get excluded from invites to almost everything. It makes no sense. I’ve chosen to stop trying to understand and pitying the fact that grown adults would act like middle schoolers and how it’s their loss because despite my unique edges, I’m awesome and I’m genuine, I truly care about helping others.

I want to again thank our backers who got all of this rolling for us. What an incredible journey. It really means the world and there will be a finished product we can all be proud of. I don’t know what it will look like yet, but we will figure it out.



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I am committing to hitting one hundred entries by New Years. I only need eleven, but the conflict of emotion makes expressing myself delicate at best. I have to be honest since whoever reads this entry has a chance to make a true impact; I feel like giving up. I desperately wanted to make an important indie documentary that would be a key to a gate holding back hundreds of thousands of kids in foster care. I feel like I lost already, I tried and failed. My first mission and I failed. But I have to remember that sneaky consistency of show biz, it ain’t over and nobody is out until they are OUT. A project isn’t dead until the entire team putting it together is literally deceased and even then, you never know. This journey will come to a closure organically. As hopeless as I feel I know it’s temporary.

There were too many assumptions of assistance in pre-production, as I said I have an ex who has a full facility that I knew wanted to see me succeed. Only like life surprised me with the opportunity to do KINDRED, it surprised him with a soulmate and baby. I didn’t feel appropriate inserting myself even in a professional capacity to their new family. Then there was lack of consistent support during and post-production but this was all my idea, so, it’s all on me. Something always went wrong. Maybe I only wanted to imagine myself as a liberator of sorts but without the stones to do the deed and take all the shit that comes with naturally going against the grain brings.

No, I actually want to make the change. I enjoy being amused but don’t belive in creating drama for no reason. And I beyond have the stones. It’s not easy to be an true individual in the first place, much less one who puts their heart on the line for the consumption of the masses all in hopes that some kids get help. Much more pragmatic than a martyr, a princess warrior poet. That’s what I wish that I could be, keep trying to be. And when I use the term princess, it’s not of condensation to the socio-economic classes of anybody, it’s just a type. It’s regal to hold the hopes of so many fallen generations. It’s lonley and reassuring at the same time.

This week is always my worst, no matter how far in my journey I find myself. I’m much more in control of the anguish and resentment, feeling my family made no real roots for our family. And finding a way to be okay with my dad having killed himself on November 23, ironically on my best friends birthday and two days after his own. I was barely two years old and do have partial memory. This year I refuse to be a victim to it. It will no longer rule any part of my life. It used to. My household never saw an uneventful, happy thanksgiving save one or two. My mom would have horrible PTSD and make everybody in the house crazy. Often dinner was just called off or walked out on. On the other end of the spectrum, she had a hell of a sense of humor. The years we went to Hyatt Regency’s and had food fights are some of my favorite memories. I could exist in one of those carefree nights for eternity. All I ever wanted was what I perceived as normal. Or at least not to feel so afraid of any agressive noise.

So I decided to baby myself with one nicety a day at least and reprogram how I perceive the meaning of this time. I choose to redefine my experience of it, and the feelings it evokes. My husband is helping, cooking almost anything I could want and reminding me how proud he is of the person I have become. No perfection but always good intentioned. It should be a time for silly celebration with the family I chose and made, not mourning an existence that I’m better off without.

These issues will never get light, but as time goes, I carry less of them and forget more often. I want to forget; to be in the present moment creating a new memory. So each year, I visualize myself checking another bag of fun and lighten my load. I invite the universe to take this weight. So I hold myself and invite you to hold me to doing one calm kindness for myself once a day this week to help make it stick. If involuntarily torturing myself didn’t work, it makes sense to try the opposite and since there’s no down side, why not give it all I can. I’m the one who has to live with me, I wish to make that place as happy as possible.

On the plus side, the three of us going out to a nice buffet means no drunken political debate or passive aggressive warfare between relatives, and that is priceless. Piece of mind is the most precious commodity in life, it enables all the other good things. I wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving! We have so much to be grateful for while we wade trepidatiously into our new presidential administration. I know I do and they are very basic; I am blessed with basic needs, good medical attention, true love from family and friends. At the same moment I just wrote that, I began to cry, realizing the thing that I want the most I cannot have. As grateful as I am for all I have, I want to lean in and have to stand on my toes a bit to put my arms around my dad and hug him. For once.

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I’ll probably end up changing the title Kindred for the final project, but who knows how’ll feel when I am there. It’s time for me review the posts I’ve written over two years, probably cringe myself to sleep for a few nights and get on with tying the good stuff together. Which is exactly what I am attempting to do now. Building a bridge over the divergence by stringing together the good stuff. It’s not at all what I imagined it to be. Literally imagined; saw it in my head and there was this palpable current. The losses of people and that dream truly breaks my heart. Never the less, I made a comittment and I have to fulfill it however possible. Beyond the fact that I want to respect the boundaries that came when the world lost the child that inspired the work, it’s organically transforming into something much shorter with only select episodes of interviews.

The process has also evolved to give me the editor I needed exactly in the format I would want to interact with while I want to take a directing/cinematography  course. We set up my office as an editing suite with multiple screens and my teenager has an A in production including Final Cut, the software I purchased from the money raised. Things are coming together nicely as we head into the holidays. It took some reminding myself that the world will be the way that I look at it. It’s literally amazing how many possibilities exist in every and any moment. I’m doing my best to choose to focus on the positive ones.

So I’ll be working on a short rough reel with my kid. That’s pretty wild. The more experience he gets, the better. Part of me feels like a failure of a Jewish mother not pushing him towards medicine and law. He has the ability but without the will, it will ultimately end poorly. I’ve spent years observing the entertainment industry from both sides and know that if you start young and get paying your dues out of the way, stay professional and get the right breaks; there is no limit to whom you can become, while having more than some fun doing it. There’s a reason people are willing to put up with so much shit as assistants(personal and production), endure; every lump on the path is a step to the goal. It’s amazing. All the aspects of it, for the most part, allow you access to travel in the most exclusive mobile lifestyle.

Bonus; it is a genuine art form. When you, or at least I, watch something, we rarely notice the subtle nuances that create the suspention of disbelief. That requires the work of countless individuals who contributed to the finished project.  Some major choreography is essential. A skill I am learning and have a long way to go. It is the climb anyway that prepares me to plant my flag. Like with climbing an actual mountain; I’ve been hurt physically, emotionally, pushed to my limits and been crutially involved in the lives of others. It’s taken so much longer than I thought with the series of post production delays, once in a while I don’t think of it as a living document, but it is.

Next will come the bribing. Part of the reason I don’t worry too much about my son is that when he is into something, he’s a diligent worker. But to get him to take time to edit a rough for KINDRED will cost holiday bargaining. He’s already pretty set with a tour of Florida this spring break then a tour of Italy next year. It’s the biggest reason we stay in the skeleton of a community that once existed, the school is beyond equipped. I wish I had the access to the tech he has. Yes, obviously I adore him but he can be a totally rancid douchebag at times. I said it, judge away. Bad mommy, never put your child down. I’m not; I’m just calling a spade a spade and I’m sure he’d agree. Plus there are things he says that sometimes that fry my temper so much I have to restrain myself. Mind you he is twice my size. I’m the one in danger here.

I have to address the elephant in the situation. My partner is going through her process that I don’t want to infringe upon that whatsoever, but there were aspects of the business elements that she handled exclusively. The last thing I’m going to do is nudge a greiving mommy about anything, especially a loaded subject like this that was all inspired by her son and what he in our short window together did for me.  So I’ll work on what I can. There are many blogs to edit, delete and reflect upon to weave together while keeping the identity of the inspiration private. I can talk about the things he told me in relation to other cases. The footage of my subject was for a reason, just not the reason it seemed to be. I don’t think I can use it. I hate that this happened and it’s bringing out depresed Amy and I’m not like that, but I am super sensitive. I’m not winning any popularity contests anyway, so I may as well say what others won’t. Epecially if it’s funny, if grousome, humor spun around enlightenment on an issue that may be percieved in an entirely new way.

It never ceases to stun me what grief can drive people to do. I’ve fallen prey but never in the way my mother and two closest girlfriends have. They all were blamed and punished after the death, the time they need unconditional love the most, by people who have no idea what the day to day schedule of torment was like on them. People love to judge. There’s some sort of presumption about the unattractive and surprisingly, the very attractive. Other’s have put me in the later catagory most of my life. That’s a shame but what the gift of orchid-like beauty has granted me is priceless. Surgeons did double duty, doors open with only a smile, people let me get away with things they shouldn’t have. The opposite side is that women seldom feel comfortable as my friend. I get excused from things like its high school. It sucks because I am I sweetie, but here we are and I live from now forward.

Writing is still hard and that has to occur alone in my head, so maybe the editing is the best thing to get back on the horse, by having my son lead me. I always said I’ll know I did a good job if I raise a good man. Mine takes it a bit far but I’d rather he be too conservative with commencing advanced teenage social activities, and that’s all good with us. Ironic he is in part named after a spy turned gangster, my grandfather. He can be slick, or tries to be. His father and I were accomplished con artists when necessary so this is no surprise that he bargins like a lawyer, again, maybe I should encourage both, if it wouldn’t kill him. The best lawyers are producers and performers. They are stubborn and will pull that rope tie chew until it’s end splinters apart or you give up.

With all of the accusations flying around about Trump and his affinity for unwanted sexual encounters, it has brough up feelings of my own experience. It’s distant enough that delving into it should be fine. Plus, this one will have many interviews to compelate. Almost every woman I know has had something happen to them, that’s just as infuriating and unacceptable. I do my best work when I’m passionately engaged. Telling these experiences and turning the guy who assaulted me into a shishkbob feels like the right thing to do. That also includes the information of how many kids are being sexually abused as far as reported cases. Rarely does the victim come forward, much less if it is a child. I’ll begin doing real research on it soon. I intend to approach the project as a healing experience for me and those that experience it. It’s not about dwelling on the past. It’s about learning from it as you continuously move forward.

Personally, it’s been a weird phase. The meteor shower the othernight really shook up the energies. I’m choosing to focus on the good things and issues I can assist in doing something about. There are several great things on the horizon I am thrilled to do. Plus we have friends down New Years and my birthday on 1/13. My best friend being able to see me about every three months is a huge blessing. This woman is a glow stick, she shines with her confidence to handle anything that comes her way. She’s beautiful. She’s got the best heart and bless that heart, she loves me and spoils me whenever she can, knowng I’d do it for her. So New Years, we’re all going to stay at Disney and watch from a good spot. It gets so crowded it’s like Times Square. Once you’re in the spot, that’s where you’ll be staying. So we choose a resort but hey, you never know.

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I’ve been feeling very adrift lately. I mustered so much passion to put into pre-promoting KINDRED and connecting with other agents involved in foster care. But I’m not ready to go back to it, it hurts too much. Instead of punishing myself for things not working out the way I had planned, I have to give myself credit for the awareness I raised and gratitude for the wonderful people I met in this preliminary process. It’s been an honor to listen to and embrace some of the bravest, best people I have ever met.

Due to a combination of factors, my body just feels beat up. I have very little energy and just getting into the shower or into the groove of the day seems arduous. These are classic symptoms of depression which I have already taken the steps to get help coping with. The thing is, I’m not a depressed person chemically, I’m an anxious neurotic. So my nervous system is totally confused. Internal conflict is a sign that I am actually working through the experience and not just numbing it. So that is actually a good thing.

An unexpected development occured during this haitus/mourning period. My teenage son also loves and studies film and theater. He’s taking advanced level courses in both including editing! Even proficient on my software, talk about a gift from the universe. An in house slave-labor editor! I mean he is 15 so I don’t expect all smooth sailing, but he loves showing off how much better he is at the technical aspects of the craft, so I’ll let him show me up all he wants. Besides, as his parent, holding the keys to his kingdom doesn’t hurt. He can be even more stubborn than I am, that’s saying a lot.

I’m working on several other projects while we give this time to settle in and decide how to proceed. I’m glad they are re-writes, it’s very hard to concentrate. Just relaxing is a challenge for now. I have to constantly bring myself back to the present moment and that’s really frustrating. My whole life, detachment has been a coping mechanism. Escapism, fantasy, acting…as long as I didn’t have to be me in the here and now. I now know that is a waste of my mental energy and a terrible short end of the stick for my loved ones. So I am practicing just being, experiencing whatever the moment brings. Even if it’s painful, it’s not the only thing happening in that moment and if I detach, I could miss something meant for me to see. So I am being as brave as I can and facing those moments too.

I’ve been more quiet on social media as well. If you don’t know what to say, don’t say anything. Especially with your dander already roughed up. I found myself about to reply honestly but harshly to several things I saw posted but thought better of it. That’s not whom I choose to be. I want to use my natural ability to shoot my mouth off and be a pain in the ass for the causes I care about and not just to hear myself spout and vent. There’s enough of that in the world already. I want to be someone who makes a difference in a major way. I’m not sure of the path being so lost in unfamiliar territory. Ever since my muse, my inspiration died I’ve been in a fog. But I have faith that if I keep following my dreams and the sliver of guiding light he shines down on me, I’ll find my way to a place I never even imagined existed.

Posted in Disappointment, documenary, entertainment, Family Drama, filmmaking, foster care, personal growth, Roadblocks in Production, social justice, writing | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment