For the first time in my life, I feel free. I get to live my life just like everyone else. I take my daughter to Tae Kwon Do in peace. I have everyday Mom talk. Nobody is asking me about Urkle. I know it may sound silly but it’s nice to be able to go grocery shopping in peace. For the first time in 36 years, my customer service badge is OFF. Yes, people still recognize me but the connection is on a “human level” here. I know that sounds silly but an extra smile in the post office or the grocery store nod is cool. I come home and in my inbox on IG or Facebook I get a message saying, “Am I tripping or were you at the post office today?” I giggle and write back, “Yes that was me. Nice to meet you.”  See here, people might see me out with my child and they just wave and keep it moving. Again, I’m sure this sounds silly to read, but for me it’s everything.

I started to feel trapped like a damn caged animal. A part of my sanity was going…While I appreciate my past accomplishments and the characters I played I was fucking tired of Maxine and her bullshit. When they called wrap 20 years ago and the writers who wrote her lines were no longer employed, to me she died. I was able to move on. I get it and I am THANKFUL to have played her and thankful she was received and loved and remembered by so many!! Playing her was a dream come true, BUT I am not her. I pray I will get a chance to play many other characters people will love just as much. But for now, I found my peace that I needed.

California was not my home, it was a place I lived because of my job. No more no less. Home is a place that makes your heart happy. I was suffocating. I am finally home! I miss driving past the beach sometimes, but Don’t miss the traffic!  I’m grateful for this chance to be free.

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