First, I took a temp gig in the Awards Office at Sony. Clearly, getting laid off wasn't anything I controlled, and I'm sure I made the right decision when offered this gig. I've always wanted a job at a studio, I'm learning tons, the job is busy and rewarding - in short, I love it! Not to mention the opportunity to work to support films I really believe in (my favorite 2009 film is District 9), on a lot and at a studio that it turns out I really like.
But, I *don't* love paying $300/month for Cobra because the temp agency I actually work for only offered limited benefit health insurance. (Sure, go to the doctor! But if it turns out you have cancer, don't call us.) Now mathematically speaking, even with Cobra health insurance at $300/month I am making more than I was on unemployment. But my stress level about my pending unemployment (this gig ends March 12th) is definitely ramping up at this point. In no small part because...
Then I moved into my own apartment. Again, the catalyst didn't come from me - my previous roommate got a cool opportunity to move, and then I had a decision to make. Again, I'm convinced I made the right decision. I don't think I really grokked how completely uncomfortable I was until I got my own place. Now I'm getting more work done at home... and feeling much more relaxed, too. Words can't convey the deep level of happiness I feel now that I have my own place.
But, the net difference to my bottom line is $277 more a month. Until the first year is up, then it's $377 more a month. And, btw, this means I will be COMPLETELY broke when I go back on unemployment. Like living on beans broke. And if I can't go back on the Cobra subsidy for the last 3 months they're offering it - I'm waiting to hear back from my Cobra on this - then I will have to start putting my health insurance payment on a credit card immediately. So that's awesome.
I quit my contributing editor position at BlogHer. My last post is this week.
It felt like the single biggest decision I've made since moving to L.A. I could hardly breath the day I decided. And so I wish I could say it was a difficult decision in the sense that I was conflicted - but when it came time for it, I wasn't conflicted at all. The constant need to work every Thursday night on something unrelated to directing was really getting to me. What I want is to be a director, and so I'd rather use my Thursday nights to write, or read screenplays, or sketch, or watch a movie, or simply relax so that when I do write or go to something directing related I'm not totally exhausted.
I've been so totally exhausted for years and years.
And I'm ready for this journey to take as many years as it takes (or to die trying for that matter), but my goal this year is to do less, more targeted things in the hopes (always in the hopes) of creating more forward movement.
Which should be easy (the doing less, more targeted things anyway), considering I'm totally broke and just desperately trying not to fall back down the rabbit hole into life crunching debt. As opposed to the - um - "manageable" debt I'm still working on. And I guess it just seems like if I'm going to be broke again, I might as well rip the band aid totally off.
Here's the latest update on my directing site btw. Did you watch Earth Force 5?
The point, however, is this - I honestly believe that these were all good decisions that I needed to make. Even while it totally goes against my upbringing in the sense that I cannot afford these things. I have no business taking a temp job with no benefits. I have no business moving into my own apartment when I could be using that money to pay off more debt. I have no business throwing away a lucrative job that was only one night a week.
Maybe I can't afford not to do these things. How am I ever going to become a working director if I don't do these things?
That feels right.
I hope it's right.
Oh, and one more thing - Academy Awards nominations are tomorrow... COME ON DISTRICT 9!!!