I was in LA last weekend to write an exam for obtaining my California High School teaching credential. I will be honest; I didn’t think I was going to be able to get on the plane. I have suffered so much anxiety and panic since last March, and my father’s recent passing really put me over the edge. The fear of flying was almost too much for me to handle. Here's my year in review.
Exactly one year ago, on March 9th, my grandmother, Tillie Leslie in her 96th year, passed away. It was the day after my Birthday and was the first of many life-changing events that would occur for me in 2009/2010. At the time I was blogging for sweetspot and had written a tribute to my Grandmother. It is still posted online here: http://www.sweetspot.ca/SweetLife/andrea_dana/7704/one_sweet_life/.
A few weeks later I began tutoring on a TV pilot called “Happy Town,” which will be airing April 28th on ABC. Due to the late night/early morning shoots, in the cold weather, I ended up getting sick. By the time we wrapped in early April, I was having really bad chest pains and respiratory issues that lasted for months. I continued to suffer from these health problems while filming “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World.” While I was on set one day, tutoring the greatest stunt boy of all time, Riley Jones, I started reading a book called “Skinny Bitch,” which is a guide to becoming a vegetarian and all the health benefits one can achieve by doing so. I was so desperate to try anything that might help, that right then and there I cut out all meat from my diet, minus fish. In no time I was feeling a lot better. My chest pains went away, I could breathe better, and I had more energy than I had in years. It was obviously a very positive life change. Emotionally, I was still trying to heal from the loss of my grandmother who had been one of best friends and greatest supporters.
In June, as I was starting to feel a little better about it, I was stunned by an accusation made by the LifeSucker about something I clearly didn’t do. He then went on to try and slander my name around town and make me look like a “crazy, psycho.” Months later, and after filing for slander and liability (just in case), I found out that not only had he been pulling similar stunts with other girls for years, but he had in fact made the whole accusation up in order to save a “meal ticket.” Obviously, my name wasn’t too tarnished around town and I wasn't too concerned after hearing other people's stories.
Things were pretty quiet for me after that, up until I found out I no longer had a job teaching piano. How did I find this information out? A kid I know happened to be at the music store and heard someone on the phone talking about me, refusing the caller piano lessons with me because I no longer work there, The guy said he had no idea how to get in contact with me, which was sort of classic considering I had bumped into him a day earlier outside of Second Cup. However, since I was already back on set working full time on “Happy Town" series, I wasn’t too disheartened by that one. Plus, that meant I could teach piano privately and make more money doing so.
A week later I had bigger fish to fry, when a German shepherd attacked me at the top of my parents street. Two of my three dogs were injured, with my dog Lucy barely making it out alive. You can read about that here: http://andreadanasilverlining.blogspot.com/2010/02/dog-attack.html
After that, I was granted two months to recover, and then got knocked right back down again with the death of my dad at the beginning of the New Year. I’d like to say that was the icing on the cake, but a few weeks later it was topped off by my great uncle, Moishe Appleby, dying. This meant the end of a generation for my dad’s side of the family and so much more sadness was endured due to it.
So now here I am, still standing after all the crap and trying to heal as best as I can. Tomorrow I will give you my extensive list of things I have been doing that have been helpful for me and enabled me to get on that plane last Thursday. I hope that if you are going through a rough time, or have suffered any type of loss in your life you will find my list helpful. There are also a lot of things that are NOT helpful which I will write about too, so stay tuned J
It is inevitable that everyone at some point is going to suffer, and it is so important to have those tools in place for when that time comes. I’ve learned the hard way that you never know when the bad times are going hit.