"I have so much love to give, I just don't know where to put it."
- William H. Macy (as Donnie Smith)in Magnolia.
This is my favorite movie line. Vulnerable and honest and heartbreaking.
And exactly how I feel sometimes -- as an actress who is bursting to work and has sooo much passion built up inside of me, I sometimes don't know where to put it.
And so, when I heard this line in Magnolia a few years ago, I was struck by how perfect it is. I think we've all felt this way before. And I think that especially in a city as promising and at times hollow as this one, it is easy to sometimes feel like what you have to share -- your love -- goes somewhere inside of you, or to a friend, or to your dog, or to your Dad, or boyfriend, or journal, or to a facebook friend -- but it needs an outlet because unless you are working, the love does not know where to go. It kind of just hangs there, looking for a home.
Yet, when I am working -- my love immediately has someplace to go and even when I am so busy working and sometimes overwhelmed with it all, I always know where to put my love. On the stage, in rehearsal, I give it to an audience, when I'm on TV, I give it to the surrounding crew and into the camera and then out to millions and millions of people, on a movie, or even in this web series I am shooting, I know exactly where to put my love and so, for those few moments or hours even, my love has a home.
On Sunday, I had my first meeting with my Little Beast Theatre Company and Kevin, one of our writer members, was talking about the purpose Little Beast can serve, which is to provide a community in this city which can feel so lonely or when you feel like your dreams are broken pieces of glass on the sidewalk and you hurt your own tender foot with them. Shards of you.
And since that last line sounded like a Jewel line, what I mean to say is that when I lived in New York, I always felt surrounded by community. And here, I always feel the aching need for it. And I have lovely friends and my neighbors are wonderful as well -- intelligent, generous people.
But a community of artists where we can go and read for one another, put up shows, support one another -- this is a place to put the love.
And lately, admittedly, my little blades, I have been feeling a bit betwixt. A bit like -- how much longer can I pursue this acting career without wanting to give up? How many times can I be an almost star? How many times can I invest myself so deeply and come sooo chillingly close only to return home with outstanding feedback and still driving my Volkswagen Beetle.
But on a day like today where I sat with my friend Kevin and opened up my heart in Farmer's Market and then on a day when I later called my friend Bitsie and shared with her as well and then I laughed with my neighbors telling tales of people who've lived in The Castle over the years, where I last night called Amy and got sooo much love from her.
And today, when I tweeted about perseverance and one of my new twitter friends emailed me because he said that this talk didn't sound like his Phoenix, as I've called myself.
Well, my little blades, on this day, I knew where to put it. Because all of you -- even little Harrison, the boy whom I tutor, all of you listened and all of you cared.
And all of you reassured me. When I was feeling like throwing in my towel -- contemplating throwing it in.
Like Rocky -- I was going to run up the steps and stop right before the top.
And then, Kevin looked me in the eye right in front of my Volkswagen in the parking lot after lunch, and he said quite simply,
I believe in you.
And I picked myself up and I am running up the steps again. This Rocky is keeping the faith. After all, I have come sooo far.
And I just know that there is a brilliant career waiting for me. That only I can fulfill. That only I can laugh and cry and inspire in.
I know this much to be true, Oprah.
And so, thank you, my little blades, for looking out for me. I feel you.
And I hope that you all know that I feel you all too. And I send you love. May you always know where to put it.