Lain's Log

September Daze

September 1/12

It's alarming how tough it is to write a blog when you have a job! I've been screening TIFF films for Tribute Entertainment in advance of the festival, opening September 6th. Between the movies and real life, (I seem to be stuck in REEL life), just haven't had time or energy to post entries.

Went out at 8:15 this morning to run and try to relieve stress. Hit my record of six laps again (just shy of 1.5 miles).

When I first started this blog back in February of 2011 at the time of my breast cancer diagnosis, I vowed to "tell it like it is, with no candy coating". That's how it played out for a long while, but lately, I haven't been writing that way. I think I've been covering up the truth because I don't like admitting how I really feel.

The above pic was taken in June of 2011, just six weeks after my cancer surgery. It's in front of Hugh's Room for a Marc Jordan concert.

Posing with singer/songwriter Marc Jordan

I was feeling great, my "Intensity Entity" level was off the charts. Energy was up up up and the feeling of well-being was fab! It lasted for months. But I guess what goes up, must come down. A revving engine can't rev forever! At some point, the super-charged excitement (which I chalked up to renewed vitality due to a second chance at life), came crashing down and morphed into a form of severe anxiety and sudden fear. It resulted in weight loss (at one point, down to 90 pounds), heart palpitations and over the top unease. I try to manage it, but nothing seems to control it. Not running, not a shrink, not drugs.

I decided to accept a short-term job with Tribute, helping to cover the Festival, thinking work might help, but I've only succeeded in making things worse. Though I try to hide it with makeup, humour and an easy-going attitude, it's all a sham. Can't explain it. Only know the deaths I've faced over the past year and a half or so haven't helped. I feel lost, filled with fear and unable to cope. So there it is. Back to no candy coating.

What have I been doing? Travelling to screenings, sometimes by TTC, mostly by car,

looking after a big house, grocery shopping, keeping kids (Max and Kate) fed, visiting people,

looking after the many growing needs of our elderly cat Tru (a Devon Rex),

keeping up with the garbage and recycling patrol, (constantly having to jump inside the bin to compact all the cartons and cans),

more stress-reducing running on the track whenever I get the chance,

spending hours at The Varsity Theatre inside the Manulife Centre,

getting there early to sign in,

talk to publicists, chat with other journalists and think about the interviews I'll be doing all throughout the 10-day festival. (The last Toronto International Film Festival I covered was a decade ago. A lot has changed. The reporters I meet seem to be speaking a whole different language, so my former nerves of steel are all bent out of shape),

killing time between screenings by visiting Indigo,

checking out the latest displays, like this tribute to Marilyn Monroe,

watching various rallies and/or protests in the Bay & Bloor area,

heading to the TIFF Bell Lightbox Theatre for more screenings,

and cleaning out my clothing closet, trying to find something - (anything),

that looks professional enough to go to work in!

And of course, going back to work also involves "upkeep"! Made another trek to hair master extraordinaire Paul Taylor at I 'N I salon. When I arrived, he had fingers crossed that he could pull off his magic again!

As my Dad always says, "It's ALL maintenance!" - Hey, it takes guts to show a picture like this. Colour, foil highlights, lowlights, colour, you name it! Above is about what I would have looked like had I needed chemo and lost all my hair. (now you know why I wear bangs! Gag me!) And in MORE infamous words, (to quote Paul), when it comes to me and my hair, "It's all about the fringe"! You better believe it!

In the end, we were BOTH happy with the results!

Ta da!

To be crude, Paul can't COUNT the number of times he's been told by clients that he does a great blowjob!
(he's much more genteel-like and prefers to say, "It's all in the blow-out!") Thanks Paul! See you again on September 20th and we'll do it all again. It's a date! ha ha!

Next, off to Urban Nails to get a shellac manicure. Trying to hold it together here. (if only I could shellac my nerves, I'd be all set!)

I've been back numerous times to the TIFF Lightbox - LOVE the red sky-high upstairs office on the way into the theatres. Would really like to see what's inside sometime!

They have some great, light-filled areas to explore - like this bar,

with terrific views of the many restaurants

on King Street West. (so far, the only one I've had time to frequent was Tim Horton's!)

Although I DID have time for a short tea break at the TIFF cafe the other day with my old pal, Ola Sturik! SO good to see her. Ola used to fill in for me in the entertainment department during my maternity leaves at Global TV, so we've known each other 20 years, but this was the first time I've seen her in as long as I can remember. I asked a million questions and she gave me a crash course on interviewing celebs to calm my anxieties after a decade out of the TV biz! She's a sweetheart and as lovely as ever. I can't believe the way the business has evolved since I left.

As much as I WANT to do a good job at the Festival (starting Thursday), my confidence is out the window and my fear of the unknown has kicked in just as much as it used to back on the first day of school. I always cried my eyes out as a kid and even as a teen, every Labour Day night because I was so petrified. My poor Mum had to deal with it. When I'd get up in the morning I would tell her, "It SMELLS nervous outside." Now, without her, I've been relying on some good friends to hold me together. You know who you are! Thank you for the advice, kindness, encouragement, love and laughs.

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