Every single person on this planet has at least one secret that could break your heart. If we could just remember that, there would be a lot more compassion and tolerance in the world

Monday, August 29, 2011


These past few weeks have definately been some of the most difficult I've ever experienced as far as mania is concerned. My energy, paranoia, and stress levels have been through the roof. On top of the regular symptoms of mania I have had quite a bit of bad luck for the past few weeks. Besides losing my credit card, my car dying, car tire falling off, crashing my bike, power going out in my bedroom, fans breaking, and school starting, I also just had a huge dissapointment with an audtion for a dream role. Bad things happen, I get it. The thing that has made these past few weeks so difficult is trying to keep myself pulled together around people who don't understand how I'm feeling, and have no idea how hard I work to hide my pain. Keeping my mania under control has been a challenge all summer, and now that things aren't going my way its becoming nearly impossible.

In acting class the other day we were asked to write down what our worst theatrical experience was. I wrote about an experience I had in Jr. High School when I played Romeo in Romeo and Juliet. We performed the infamous BALCONY SCENE in an assembly for the 8th and 9th graders, and their reaction was... well exactly how you would expect Jr. High kids to act (lots of cheering/cat calling blah blah blah). But AFTER the balcony scene was over I had a monologue to finish the scene. The kids were so bored that the kissing was over that they started yelling things out at me, and eventually boo-ing so loudly that I walked off stage and shut the curtins myself. It still remains one of the most humiliating experiences of my life.

After we wrote down that experience we were asked to write down why that experience is actually the BEST theatrical experiene of our lives. I wrote that I learned humility from that experience. I learned that I perform not to please other people, but because I love it more than anything. I started from a humble place and that keeps me grounded as a performer.

Now i'm doing my best to apply that acting exercise to my personal life. I was cast in the ensemble of HAIR at the University of Utah which is WONDERFUL, but hard because i worked so hard in the hopes of getting one of my dream roles, and failed. But I learned from my audition experience that I put too much pressure on my professional life. My self worth is defined by how successful I am in my career. When I wasn't cast I was afraid people wouldn't like me anymore, that my friends wouldn't respect me, that I was UGLY,  that my life was essentially over. In an attempt to make me feel better my friends said I probably just didn't fit what the director had in mind. I just wasn't right. But that made me feel even worse. The idea that someone doesn't like me, or doesn't think I'm right freaks me out so bad. THATS CRAZY! As a Bipolar person I am very inconsistant emotionally... but my career path is EVEN MORE inconsistant. I have to learn to not let my happiness depend on my success as a performer. This experience hurt me a lot, but it was a huge wakeup call for me and I think it will help me so much in the future. If i can learn to NOT base my happiness off being a perfect performer..... well then I won't have to change my major to pre-med.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

manic summer

First of all let me state that this has been a REALLY fun summer. I have made a TON of new friends and had wonderful experiences and I'm loving my life here in SLC. I love working at urban, teaching voice, doing shows, blah blah blah. now to the good stuff :)

This has been a really interesting summer for me. First of all its the longest manic period I can remember ever having. I have had raicing thoughts, high anxiety, lots of energy, and WAY too much ambtion for a few months now. I can get to sleep with the help of pills and cough syrup, I've been sticking to a diet for the first time in my life, I go to the gym.... but I also PANIC a lot lately. EVERYTHING is a huge deal, and I've been rediculously paranoid. The following anicdotes illustrate my absurd paranoia and fear:

I have convinced myself several times this summer that my friends are mad at me. Around the beginning of July I saw an angry and vague status update from a friend. I instantly panicked. I then proceeded to create a story based off some actual and completely irrelevent events, as to why this friend hated me. I then spent my family vacation trying desperately to come up with some way beg forgiveness from this friend. I didn't sleep well, I couldn't focus on having a good time with my family, I COULDN'T ENJOY MY FOOD (big deal) all because I couldn't forget about all the pain I had caused my friend.... got home from my vacation to find out my friend wasn't mad....... at all. great.

During my run of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels I was COMPLETELY on edge. I would get sick to my stomach every time I had to take off my shirt in the dressing room because I was POSITIVE the other people in my dressing room were laughing about my belly when I was out of the room. I took every bit of critiscism from directors and fellow cast mates as a personal attack. If a castmate said something like "you are so skinny" or "did you go tanning today?" it instantly turned into "you look like a holocaust victum" and "you superficial asshole why would you lay out and risk skin cancer?" HOWEVER I think I did a pretty good job of keeping my paranoia to myself. A lot of people in the cast told me they thought I was very calm and collected. (thats what you think! muahahahahahahahaha) As far as actual performances went I was totally convinced I was the weakes dancer/singer in the cast. I continually felt the desire to scream I GOT A BIG SCHOLARSHIP TO A REALLY GREAT SCHOOL to my castmates all the time to let them know that I deserved to be in the cast.(thank god I held that in... it would have totally ruined my "calm and collected" reputation)

And most recently (and most painfully/embarassingly) I have learned that I am incapable of speaking to attractive men. Which means I am unable to date. Which means I am doomed to be single for the rest of my life!!!!!!!!! I took DAYS working up the courage to send a text message to a VERY attractive and single man. Then when I accidentally happened to be in the same room as him my instinct was to RUN. Luckily I did not... however.... i probably should have. I stood there like an idiot and sad NO WORDS. let me repeat NO WORDS. I was literally paralized and mute with fear. My stomach was turning, my eyes watered, my face turned red.... sort of the same thing that happened when my 6th grade gym teacher made me try and climb the rope by myself in front of the class...as you can imagine I was completely unsuccessful. I would have given anything to be in that sixth grade gym class again instead of in this empty apartment blowing my chance at showing how CHARMING AND FUNNY I can be. (just nod, smile, and pretend you agree)

IN CONCLUSION I really gotta learn how to lighten up. This summer could have been incredible if I could just learn how to relax, not make life into a competition, and love myself a little more. How am I going to lighten up? TINA FEY. I just finished her book and I am completely inspired to live my life the same way she does. She completly trust and accepts herself as an average human being that likes to eat and dosn't know how to date. (tina and i are obviously kindred spirits) So I'm going to try and just LET GO of the need to be perfect in everyones eyes. I AM JARON BARNEY AND  I'M A THIN, HAIRY, FUNNY, LOVEABLE, AVERAGE LOOKING, TALENTED, TACO BELL EATING, UNPHOTOGENIC, BAT SHIT CRAZY, TRENDY, SONOFABITCH.  and if you don't like it.... thats ok. I'd rather be 9 peoples favorite thing then 100 peoples 9th favorite thing ANYWAY :)