You donate. I run. Together, we help Nepal! Please watch this video and help change the world! And then tweet, like, & re-post it please!
I haven’t blogged in a while…and the culprit has been a fundraiser that has been the sole consumer of my existence for the past two weeks. Let’s just say that I do not envy event planners and now I understand why people elope! This is not to say, however, that I am not basking in the afterglow of an amazing night. The cumulative result of so much planning and meeting and deliberating and arguing and stressing was an evening that showed me that I finally am who I’ve always wanted to be…and that is priceless. There was no time to realize it last night, but today, as I reflect, I can quantify the different ways in which I’ve grown into the woman that I’ve always wanted to “grow up to be.” Warning: the information that I’m about to share is intimate in nature, so for those with weak emotional tolerance, you may want to navigate away now……. Still here? Well, a peek into Jeanette’s Diary you shall receive! Now, I’m the kind of person who strives to be a doer rather than a talker. I want the proof to show in the pudding…let my accomplishments speak for themselves. Hence, I’m divulging the following because I feel I’m actually stating what is and not speculating what will be. To demonstrate the contrast, I will share the past goals that I’ve had, followed by how I feel that I’ve accomplished them.
- I’ve always wanted to be a connector amongst different communities; someone who had the ability to combine her worlds Last night, I witnessed friends from my personal life, my gyms, my church, and my industry mingling in one place, connecting through the common purpose of supporting me. And I felt fully at ease flitting from group to group and introducing person to person. This is a far cry from the days when I felt that I had to compartmentalize all the different worlds that comprised my life and I always wished to have the ability to freely connect everyone.
- I’ve always wanted to be someone who worked side-by-side with her pastors. (whom she would be on a first-name basis with!) For the fundraiser, I convinced two of my pastors to be a part of my fundraiser last night. It was a vision that I had from the very beginning. And in just recent months, I have built up a relationship with them as such that made this effortless. They never fail to tell me that I’m doing great work and express their desire to collaborate with me.
- I’ve always wanted to be a valid and respected member of the artist community. I can now truthfully say that I run an acting working and produced a show chock-full of New York talent. I can say that people ask me for advice on the industry as well as the craft of acting. I can say that I am regularly affirmed in my abilities as a model/actress. I can say that talent that I respect respects me right back. I can say that I feel like I make a difference in the acting world. I can say that I have true friends and acquaintances in the acting world. I can say that I am an actor/model. Cool!
- I’ve always wanted to be fearless…creatively, socially, spiritually, and professionally. Putting together this fundraiser has required me to put myself out there every day. Whether I had to approach vendors, promote to my spin class, stalk talent, proposition high-profile individuals, or get up on stage as an artist, it never got easier. But…I did it. And I succeeded. Here is a snapshot of some of the insane predicaments in which “being fearless” put me in. Get ready for some belly laughs! -I wanted to approach the Rubin Museum [Himalayan Museum]. I only had a small window of time in which to do so…and that window closed on me. But deterred I was not. I saw a lady at the front desk still inside, on the phone. I now know her as Tashi Chondron, one of the managers and a very striking woman, inside and out. But at that moment, as I stood before her tapping on the clearly locked glass door, pleading with her through my eyes to make an exception for me, she probably thought I had lost my mind. Thank God, she came to the door and we conversed through the crack, faces pressed in as close as was hygienically acceptable, as she explained that she literally did not have the ability to open it for me. And she told me to leave my materials at the security desk down the street for her. Thank you God again!, that the security guard simply let me enter through, essentially trespassing during museum afterhours and to her surprise, there I was before her, no door to hold me back! We got to know each other and she donated ten tickets to us and promoted our cause to her staff and guests! What a happy ending! -Another similar incident consisted of my approaching a comedian whom I knew only through watching his show. I was an instant fan and made it a point to tell him so apres-show. I wanted to get him a performance slot in a friend’s comedy production, but to no avail. And then, when it came time for us to book talent for our fundraiser, of course he popped into my head. “But this guy writes for David Letterman!” I brooded. Nevertheless, thankful for the protection of virtual communication, I reached out to Kevin via email and hit “send.” I doubted he would even remember me, let alone agree to perform for free! But he did remember me, ecstatically, if I may add…AND he agreed wholeheartedly to perform. Victory! -I had to literally pep-talk myself into promoting my fundraiser to my spin classes. There’s just something about petitioning people to attend something solely for yourself that makes it feel as if you’re soliciting. “Just give me a clipboard and a smock to complete the costume,” I thought to myself. Nevertheless, I did it, as much as I could, sometimes mustering up the boldness to stand at the door handing a flyer to each student as they exited. And you know what happened? People donated and people came! Some people whom I didn’t even know! People who would never have known otherwise! Score!
- I’ve always wanted a hot body. (Just sayin’!) Last night, I wore a Bebe dress. In a size XS. And it fit like a glove. This was monumental. I have probably been fighting an upstream battle with my body for most of my adult life, only really feeling happy in my skin during two very distinct periods. I am not purporting by any means that I was obese, but I wasn’t happy with my temple. To make a long story short, it required my having consulted with a nutritionist for the past few months in order to learn and apply what it requires to acquire the body I want. And for the first time, I feel like I can maintain this body because it hasn’t been accomplished through a rigid diet, as in the past. I have knowledge behind my decisions and habits that I can continue for the long haul. And just as I had envisioned, my confidence in auditions has skyrocketed, my readiness to shoot is back, my success in booking is climbing and I feel like I’m on fire!
- I’ve always wanted to be a missionary. Ever since I was a highschool church-goer, watching my friends dispersing to all corners of the world to do God’s work, I wanted to go on a missions trip. But I never felt ready, spiritually or financially. More than a decade passed since I pushed the urges away. And then last year, through much prodding from my circle of faithful brothers and sisters, I finally made good on my desire and went to Taiwan! And while I was there, God already spoke to me about going to another one this year! And I am! And I believe that there are more to come. Amazing!
- I’ve always wanted to be a well-connected individual. Now, I’m no celebrity…not on a global scale at least 😉 I’ve often stared wistfully at pictures of celebrities hob-nobbing with other celebrities and gracing red carpets and partaking in all sorts of glamorous activities. I’ve been teased with momentary access to this lifestyle here and there, but alas, inevitably have to return home sans glass slipper! Last night, however, throwing a fabulous party in a fabulous studio in the West Village made me realize that I’m not that small of a fish in the ocean of NYC after all! There is always farther to go, but I’m staying afloat. 🙂
- I’ve always wanted to be an influence-er. As expected, I saw many good friends and old friends last night. But unexpectedly, I also saw some people that I had only met a week ago. I saw some students from a spin class that I had only taught once. I saw a girl whom I had simply auditioned with (essentially, my competition!) several days earlier. The point is, I had enough of an impact on strangers to garner their attendance at my event! They paid $30 and gave hours of their time to support me, whom they had only met for a brief moment in time only recently! I was overwhelmed…beyond overwhelmed. I have often heard that I’m an influencer and an inspiration. But you tend to take those compliments with a grain of salt. Now? I believe it.
THE BACKSTORY: I’m going on a service trip to the Himalayas and I want you to come with me! Through your financial support, you can be a critical component of this effort! This seed was planted last summer, when I embarked upon my first service trip to Taiwan. I was spiritually awakened, shaken, and re-committed. In retrospect, this trip was the catalyst for a wealth of astounding developments this past year. One of the most impactful individuals that I met during my time in Taiwan was Professor Hsieh, a mountain-climbing former gangster, now professor, who has dedicated his life to doing good for people in God’s name. He journeys on an adventure service trip every year, combining a physical feat with a philanthropic effort. He might as well have been the Pied Piper [except with good intentions!]…I wanted to follow this man wherever…he was that powerful! And my excitement only rose as he described the physical feat of climbing the Himalayas. To read more about him, read this post. 2010 MISSIONS TRIP TO TAIWAN: THE MISSION: Cut to 6 months later and I was e-mailing him to learn of the details. And here I am, signed up and ready to start raising the funds! The trip is around the corner and I have $5,000 to raise. This 25-day trip will begin on July 25th when I fly to Kathmandu, Nepal to join the students of Taiwan Sport University and Tunghai University. Together we will trek through the Himalayas until we reach Mt. Annapurna, where we will help the villagers of this mountain. Our service to them will include providing medical assistance, conducting a summer camp, and building a latrine. And no doubt, we will be praying for them and loving on them the whole time too! THE TASK AT HAND: So as I mentioned, $5,000 needs to be raised, as the cost of the missions trip is NTD 95,000 [$3,300] and we have to first fly ourselves to Kathmandu. It’s very daunting to think that if that money does not come through God’s grace, then it may have to come through American Express…but I’m not going to worry, because I trust God more than that! I was floored by the financial support I received to get me to Taiwan last year and I look to this year to be another powerful testimony! I came very very close to not fulfilling the financial requirements last year and I don’t wish for that again! THE ASK: And so, I ask you, as my friend, brother/sister, family, and soon-to-be-friend, please open your wallets and give just a little bit to send me to the Himalayas to pray for and provide for the people in need over there. It’s a solid effort in its 7th year of successful adventure service efforts. Learn more here: Chih-Mou Hsieh Profile Give below! Thank you in advance!