Random Conversations

So You Think You’re A Person

My mom’s best friend (who has passed away) used to have a phrase she would say that would always make me smile a bit.  She’d talk about someone or something someone did and she would say, “S/he thinks they’re a person.”  Yet somehow it had become clear to her that they were not worthy of the status of person.  I wondered what made someone not worthy of being called a person and now I think I understand what she was saying.

People have responsibilities and obligations and when you do not meet them or you act in a way that is disrespectful to yourself or others then you can really put your status as a person in jeopardy.

We’re all human and make mistakes but ask yourself if you are a person for yourself and for someone else.  Being a person to me means you care about other persons just as much as you care about yourself.

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Random Conversations

I’m The Type of Person. . . .

I once heard that if you truly listen to people they will tell you who they are.  I naively believed that when someone actually began a sentence with “I’m The Type of Person . . .” they were actually telling me who they are.  Now I understand that anything prefaced with this comment is simply who that person would like other people to think they are and it really has very little with who they actually are.  I also realized that listening is more than about listening to the words people say.  But listening to a person is about listening to the person as a whole – their movements, their tone, their eyes, etc.

Also, I don’t believe I know every “type” of person.  Haven’t we divided ourselves into enough categories already?

Random Conversations

The Question

There’s nothing worse than feeling great about yourself for having lost a bit of weight and then having someone stop you and ask if you are pregnant.

I admit I’ve taken seats on the train from people who clearly believed I was pregnant and needed a seat.  But rarely do people come out and ask me if I’m pregnant.  I believe it’s a question you’re not supposed to ask a woman under any circumstances but in my life I’ve felt that people feel like they can say things to me that they can’t say to other people – sometimes that’s a good thing and sometimes it’s a not so good thing.

When I was asked I took it in stride, moved on and did not get nasty.  Just a simple – No.  But the next time someone jumps up and offers me a seat again I will sit.

And just for the record – I have never been pregnant.

Random Conversations

5 cents

The other day I was on the train with a man who was clearly handicapped.  He walked through the train asking for spare change and no one (including myself) gave him any money.  I just want to say I’ve seen this man before and every other time I’d seen him I’d given him a dollar or some change.  And as he walked up and down the aisle eventually trying to shame us all for not even sparing 5 cents towards his dinner I thought maybe other people had given him money in the past as well and they were thinking what I was thinking – How much am I willing to give?  Whether it’s spare change, time, clothing, shelter – How much am I willing to give?  In light of the other times I’d freely given him my money I just had to say I had given him enough.

Random Conversations

“It’s Over With Now”

I hate when I’m having a conversation with someone, talking about how I feel, and then right in the middle of my thought the other person says, “It’s Over With Now.”  It’s so dismissive.  It’s like saying I don’t really care how you feel.  Your feelings don’t really matter and I don’t want to talk about this anymore so whey don’t you just shut up.

And I do shut up.  I feel like if the person really wanted to hear what I had to say or cared how I felt they would have listened to me and not shut me down mid thought.

And then I wonder if people are trying to make me feel better.  As if telling me it’s over with now will make me stop thinking about it and move on.  And eventually I do move on from whatever was bothering me but I always remember the person who tells me “It’s Over With Now” because if that person were actually listening to me then they would understand that it wasn’t quite over for me yet and maybe they would just listen.

Random Conversations

What Does Your Face Reveal

A perfect stranger looked at me and gave me a bit of a smile and as she passed me she stopped and said, “You look happy.”

Now people are always in a hurry to tell me to smile or cheer up or not to look so glum but never has anyone told me that I look happy.  And when she said it and I thought about it I realized she’d seen the truth.

I don’t think I realized it because I haven’t been happy in very long time.  And people keep saying things like you can choose to be happy and happiness isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.  I believed them because I was unhappy and I wanted to believe them.  But right in the here and now I can say I know that my happiness has a lot to do with my circumstances.  It’s not a state of mind I can just will myself into but I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts.  One thing I know for sure is that nothing lasts forever.

It's Not Stamped On Your Forehead, Random Conversations

A Reminder Of Why I Love The Theatre So!

So I was on the A train heading back home after seeing End of Longing at the MCC Theatre.  I had the playbill in my hand and the woman beside me asked what the play was about.  After doing a mediocre job of explaining things I let her read the article in the playbill with Matthew Perry.  She was suddenly determined to see the show.

Having dealt with alcoholism herself the piece intrigued her and I’m certain she will not only see the show but bring someone with her.  It reminded me of how theatre can move people.  And how I hope people are moved by my piece.

It’s Not Stamped On Your Forehead is a long time coming.  I’ve been trying to write about being sick basically since the time I was diagnosed almost twenty years ago.  At the very least I hope the show sparks an honest conversation about what it means to live with mental illness – the medications, the impact on relationships, constant doctor’s supervision, fear of relapse, and so much more.

Click Here To Buy Tickets to It’s Not Stamped On Your Forehead presented by The Midtown International Theatre Festival – August 1st 7:45pm; August 3rd 6pm; August 5th 7:15 at the Jewel Box Theatre 312 West 36th St.