This is a letter to my creativity coach Sara
Before our call I always give her a headsup..
That this did not come peacefully.
My calling came after a lot more drama and despair.
I could understand why I had selected that photo to be in the deck, since my main project for this pseudonym LS Harteveld is still my 1995 project.
The time when I was 23 old.
Obviously, the Madonna was supposed to represent “me”, Lauren in 1995.
The 1995 project is about being a 23 year old Lauren Harteveld, a college graduate, who saw her first year as a working young woman fall into f’ing bits.
A year where she has been working for a publisher, mostly from home.
A year where she lost her lover Bear, because he wanted to have a quote unquote real relationship, or at least that’s how she translated his announcement her five year affair was no longer to be consumed.
By now Bear has proven he does still appreciate their friendship, and he’s actually a better friend to her than he was during their affair.
Lauren has lost something that was very dear to her, and the discrepancies between her and Bear are accumulating.
Before his one year contract with a prestigious financial firm expired, he already landed himself a better job, which allowed him to start traveling the world and to run his own hustle.
A privilege rarely given to someone his age, where doing office face-time and making sure you were seen by the right people was usually all you could do for your career.
She had lost a full year.
A year where, yes, she had figured out she wanted to be a writer. Or that she already was a writer and she should start monetizing it.
But that was months ago.
And she had done little to nothing to turn her life around, and didn’t know how.
She didn’t even like the ass-sitting hours of being a writer, and her goal was to have less of them.
So how then, was she going to be a writer?
And then a second “layering” was added, where I – also intuitively – sequenced them.
Some parings were logical, like all the yoga cards together.
But some didn’t make sense to me at all.
To a certain level I could understand why I had looked for a photo of the 23 year old Madonna, and yet its presence especially at a crucial point in the card deck, right before pictures of what I assume will be my next boyfriend, didn’t make sense.
It would have made more sense in my real estate section, which closed the card deck and contained a card of a beautiful apartment building, copious amounts of Jon Bon Jovi pictures on stage, and countless interiors in different combinations of the colors white, black, and a dominant red.
Then why wasn’t she in the real estate slash success section of the deck?
That real estate section or not, the image of the 23 year old Madonna is the key to my success.
Oh and by the way his pictures, and how omnipresent they were in the deck, was another intuitive choice that had baffled me.
Because if they stood for whom I thought they stood for, I didn’t see how that man, the man I thought it represented, would ever come into my life.
With regard to the man on card 3,5 and 6, and Madonna in between, I had taken it as:
“Become 23 year old Madonna and the man in the pictures shall be yours.”
And with regard to my real estate section and JBJ’s presence:
“Run your business like the Jersey Syndicate (the name Bon Jovi used to refer to themselves in the late 80s) and all this wealth shall be yours.”
But I felt a shift.
A big one.
And JUST when I was letting down my guard.
And JUST as I had decided to stop giving fucks about trying to please everyone and be a perfect example of Covid Responsibility, and start taking more risks in the social life and sex life department;
It was back.
The thought of something (Or someone, Sara! Or someone!) that I had engaged with (this was a euphemism) for the last 14 days, would report me to our health services as someone they had “spent more than 15 minutes with in the same room” (oh, more euphemisms Sara), that these sweet moments of human interaction would end up being clinically dissected by health services?
But the thought that if I have sex while I am also “in the loop” with a workplace?
That my social and sexual indulgence is going to spill over into having conversations with the temp agency and coworkers?
Phobias the way I had not experienced them in decades!
So to cancel all contact with friends, family, lovers, for the upcoming 12 to 18 months or as long as it took, in order to be clean enough to work.
I would make up some excuse for this current job offer, and start clean in the second week of September.
No residues left.
As long as I would maintain a social anorexic state, I would never have to have embarrassing conversations since all exposure would have been in service of God and Mankind.
But I did do two other things.
I had successfully beaten its first 15+ year round in my life, where I autonomously conquered the hiv/aids phobia that had limited my sex life and had set me off on the wrong foot, pursuing long-term monogamous relationships which did not excite me one bit.
Not even when I was 17.
But due to Covid and a messy week of new government regulation being declared by decree, then pulled back through push-back from opposition, and ultimately GASLIT UPON US-
the fears were back.
It was as if all the things I had done to tackle the first phobia, had failed, and the beast now had two heads where there once had been one.
I was not going to do this alone, again.
So this made me decide if they ever returned, I would not go through the hassle of solving them myself.
Already the first night of having my demons return to me, I emailed the psychotherapist who would have done my diagnosis, had I still needed help at the beginning of this year.
I wrote her a letter, stating that although the problems for which I had been referred in 2019 had been handled by myself successfully, old fears dating back to the 80s had come back to haunt me.
Awakened from their dormant sleep by Covid.
And that I was hoping I could be treated by their practice, or receive a referral to a colleague.
But also, when I didn’t need it anymore, earlier.
If all goes well – and my healing is complete! – not only will I be able to sport having a job or any social or sexual interaction of my choosing next to a career of being, eh, Madonna I guess!
I will also calmly carry the responsibility of this human interaction.
Including the responsibility of having an unusual sex life that will never be your average transparent, run of the mill, monogamous relationship.
I will be at peace with the fact that human interaction comes at a price.
And with the fact that my body is a chemical weapon that calls for having your entire social circle being round up like the a terrorist organization and suffering government repercussions for taking your mini-chemical warfare body out into the streets to go grocery shopping.
And if I could have known I was an open sewer because I showed signs of being an open sewer or because I have been into contact with people who were showing signs of being open sewers.
Where open sewer can be replaced by “chemical bomb”, “radioactive waste” or “leper”.
Psychology 101 right?
Let the healing begin.
I m clearly missing the Don’t Worry Be Happy take on things.
I m making this way too difficult.
Even in the 80s letting yourself get upset by the combination of social control with deadly diseases, was for softies.
One major thing I did in the wake of those events.
I asked for help for the two headed phobia monster that was now chasing me, instead of taking it on by myself.
I mean, why would you, when its psychology 101 right?
Oh, and there’s me being sarcastic again.
If working among other people was basically mY wOrSt fEaR right now, then what?
I have not unpacked it fully, to be honest. But from the first look of it, everything is in there.
It’s like an IKEA box, that you still have to put together yourself and we all know that might take a day where you thought it would be 30 minutes;
But who remembers that in years to come when your utilitarian but also beautiful piece of furniture has taken its rightful place in your living space, and gives you joy everyday?
No one remembers the day of unpacking then.
Of wondering how it would all fit together.
No one will even remember that if something was missing or if you needed extra tools to put it together, that you went back to the store, or borrowed a hammer from a neighbor you had never spoken to before.
It’s all forgotten.
And in the end all that will be remembered is its happily ever after presence in my life.
My vision PART 1: Made by Lauren
Although my vision encompasses all areas of my life, it is really rooted in this pseudonym, in the work I do as LS Harteveld.
And specifically in the project Lauren 1995.
Just like Anais Nin, she’s going to do it herself.
This was an offline “endeavor” or at least it would have been, if I had been writing anything!
Aside from small daily notes in my journal.
But in combination with cleaning up my love life (see, The Vision part 2), I think 1995-1996 could be written online.
I haven’t decided yet.
And finally I “created” a new job, which ties Lauren 1995 to current day me, writing and YouTubeing about Bon Jovi under my real name;
Under my real name I have a YouTube channel discussing old Bon Jovi concerts, and I have a website with Bon Jovi related stories.
And although I ve been in heart and soul, with Lauren 1995;
I always knew this work under my real name was my future.
That it was My Thing!
That’s IT, Baby!
A 23 year old Lauren, reviewing concerts of her favorite band, writing about them. It’s like a crossover between being a VJ (remember those?) and a rock journalist (remember those? Sadly one of the professions we seemed to have decimated with the coming of the internets) gives the 1995-me a way to interact with what I do online in the real world.
That is part of my vision.
My vision PART 2: my love life and social life are clean and simple
I do not have time for occasions, events, and people, who might come at unforeseen costs.
If you now go to a bar or cinema, you may be contacted by health services and lose two weeks of your life to quarantine.
Simply because you were in the same space for longer than 15 minutes.
Don’t have time for that, ain’t gonna risk it, sorry!
No more cinema and no indoor cafes and restaurants, unless there is an extreme case of exception going on.
I can’t waste another night or nights worrying about who I am going to infect, and if I should or should not go to work because I sneeze one time too many.
I m going to stay away from anything that gets under my skin.
Jobs with in person colleagues, cafes, cinemas, and secret affairs.
For the upcoming year, year and a half, I m going to keep an impeccable clean social rep sheet, and focus on my art and my message instead.
My vision PART 3: What the Madonna Card really meant
Before I get to that, I have not told you why it’s 9 months. And why now, in August. Although maybe I told you a bit of why now;
Because I m always inspired by the school year.
June is the month where you get your diploma, and the month the yoga courses end.
The day of the Bon Jovi concert in 2019
The 1981 Madonna.
I think it was a 1983 interview where the host asks her what she wants to achieve and she answers; “To rule the world.”
I can’t remember if she stared into a mirror or at photos of her idols, that were a representation to her of what she wanted to achieve.
But I remember her saying this was the moment when she wondered if she should just give up on her dream and go back home or have a normal career.
She asked herself:
“How bad do I want this?”
Whether it was linked to aids/hiv, to Covid, or to a plain and dull version of being judged and having them talk behind your back because they don’t understand you and therefor keep looking for reasons to hate you.
The phobia was always something that had to be dealt with, before I would push through and make it big.
An Unexamined Life is Not Worth Living
I usually don’t do this, but if you’re interested in following my Bon Jovi related content under my real name, you’re invited to follow the following accounts:
– Rock Star Writer (blog)
– Rock Star Writer Facebook
– my personal Twitter under my real name
Books LS Harteveld/ Lauren
Lauren’s books are available at LULU
New books will also be added to Lulu, as sites are being curated.
coming soon: new books
1. Reboot – a hero’s journey. Diary 2017-2020
2. I M NOT CHANGING MY FUCKING SHOW
3. Big Mistress – confessions, columns and sex advice from the other woman
4. Blote Kont- (Dutch)
5. ALL THE THINGS – unpublished work 2010 – 2020
The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready is to follow this blog. The subscription button to this blog is on this page, probably on the right.