HOW WONDERFUL THIS IS
Parkinson’s is a degenerative disease and while it’s progress can be slowed down, it currently doesn’t have a cure. People suffering from Parkinson’s will experience a gradual loss of coordination and ability to perform even the most basic of every day tasks, including feeding themselves.
I found the website for the project where you can purchase a spoon for someone you know/love and even possibly donate money to help someone out who can’t afford it themselves right: HERE.
At the very least, please spread this for all the people who have Parkinson’s or loved ones with Parkinson’s.
You’ll help them take part of their life back.
I started writing down what has happened to me this week and how much emotional pain I have been in but I couldn’t bring myself to share the embarrassing things I have done to myself this week.
If I can say anything about depression, for me, is that it takes all of the energy I have just to stay alive. I know that I have so many people that love and support me. I know that some people see me as an inspiration for others. But sadly some weeks I don’t see or feel that.
I have spent the last 5 days straight locked in my room secluded from the world. As someone who loves to be surrounded by people you will understand that depression affects you in a way that you can not control.
This letter isn’t a cry for attention or an excuse for my actions but a hope that if you find yourself in emotional pain like I have this week know that I am here for you.
We may have only met once before. We may have known eachother for years. We may never have met. All of these are fine if you are hurt or sad. If life is causing you to question what your purpose is.
I am here for you
yes I might be a comedian but I am a comedian with a mental illness. I never want anyone to feel the way I have felt this week and if I can be any help I will.
So before I start spilling my heart onto the page let me first state that I am in my final months of my education degree at university.
I know many of my friends who are teachers in the past scoff when I say I am a teacher. Teachers put a great deal of passion, dedication, time, energy and add countless more adjectives and adverbs to the melting pot to make their classrooms a success.
As a part of my degree I have been fortunate enough to be on placement and with my work in schools as a teachers aide I feel I am able to throw in my voice.
Something that I have noticed since attending university is the importance of words and there impact on their audience. We see this throughout society and it makes me laugh. You know the one where you think to yourself ‘are people so worried about this word?’. Should we not look past these words to the individual person they affect ? Does this person like this label?
As I sit now writing my second to last essay for my university degree, at 4:21am, I notice that I am confronted with two of these words. In the past I have brushed off labels and tried to remind myself that I am more than a label. I guess, simply put, I am a series of labels. These words are Educator and Learner. Teacher (educator) and Student (learner) are still thrown around occasionally almost like forgotten relics of the past.
These words made me question myself and their validity. Now I see labels as a necessary evil in the world. I hate being pigeon holed by characteristics I hold. I want to be judged on all facets of my being. With this in mind, this is how I tackle the interactions I have with others. If for instance I am confronted with a brash person, I don’t instantly jump to ‘what a cow’ mode. I take into account the situation and the possibility that their day may have not been as smooth sailing as my own. I know I am a saint feel free to worship me at your whim (insert chuckles here).
When people look at teachers they assume or expect this all powerful all knowing super human. Although we attempt to be we are not. We are just like everyone else. We make mistakes sometimes and that is ok. After all learning from our mistakes makes us grow. This in lies the problem.
If teachers are educators and students are learners there is even more pressure placed on ‘educators’ to be all knowing. Now I know this isn’t the intention of the word but this is how I feel. I am proud to call myself an educator. As soon as I learn something new I want to share it with the world, hence why I am writing this to you now. But by this admission I am still a learner.
Doctors have a ‘doctors practice’
Lawyers have a ‘lawyers practice’
teachers should have a
Any good educator is still themselves a learner. Which is something that university has taught me above all else. But we as individuals need to remind ourselves that people aren’t defined by one label but a series of labels that might contradict eachother.
Go out create, educate, learn
Tonight at Rhino Room was what has been dubbed ‘One Mic Challenge’. This night gives us ‘young’ comedians the opportunity to experience some of the more unique challenges a comedian can face during their comedy career.
The last challenge night was in December last year and I was slightly nervous/excited as I was still quiet new, as I am still new now I think, to comedy.
The last time I got ‘The pokie room challenge’. Sometimes, quiet often you will have to do a gig where you are competing with other external noises. So while I was on stage I had people rattling coins in tubs, the sounds of pokie machines playing through the speakers and someone occasionally yelling ”jackpot” or ”i’ve won” throughout my set.
This might seem a bit cruel to the outside world but that and many other things are what we as performers have to face and having this challenge night provides us with the opportunity to learn about these in a safe environment.
I am glad to say that this through me off a little but overall my set went well. So when I heard that this night was going to happen again I was so dang excite.
This time around hosting the night was the ever Irish Eddie Bannon, a good friend to some (one of his jokes I stole, in case he reads this). He did a truly fantastic job and I was once again nervous/excited at what would unfold.
Some of the challenges included:
James McCann - Internal monologue (Eddie would use a mic offstage and pretend to be the voice in James’s head)
Duncan Turner - Encore (Duncan was told he had 2 minutes, instead of the usual 5 to do his set. He was escorted off the stage only for the crowd to ask for an Encore….More than a few times)
Lewis Dowell - Deaf and Blind (unable to see or hear the audience)
Now it was my time to shine…
I had to do a duo act or split bill. without notice or preparation time I had to work with someone who I wasn’t told about.
This was thankfully a good friend of mine Joshua Robertson. Now for those who have not seen our Josh before you will not be aware that he is physically disabled. He needs help getting on/off stage and has to sit down to do stand up the works. He is amazing funny and quiet quick witted.
…..then there is me. Now we both realised fairly quickly that we wouldn’t be able to do our material so we would have to improvise. I decided, VERY QUICKLY IN MY HEAD, that he had to get the laughs and I had to be the fall guy. If anyone has seen me for more than a minute will know I am hmmm how can I say it ohh a DIVA … I like me the stage. But I knew if I started making fun of a disabled person, even if he is my friend, I might get a few boo’s. So I gave Josh ammunition to insult me and make me feel like shit.
This worked amazingly well Josh got all the laughs and I was the fall guy. After leaving the stage I wondered what would it have been like with someone else. Could I have held my own as well as I did with Josh.
Also could I have done as well with one of the other challenges.. Who knows.