Sunday, April 15, 2012

Momma had a baby and her head popped off !!!!!


This was one of  my childhood addresses. Actually the only one I can remember.  I can still see the large modern, bubble white numbers going down the front of the house. Boldly announcing its presence as if wonderful things were happening inside. Maybe my step-father had those dreams when he put the numbers up. He would end up heartbroken like the rest of us.

Now one would think  with a name like Sunnyside, it would filled with less than bright days, joyous events and perfection. This was not the case. Most of my childhood was a series of upheavals , moving and moving from one place to another. My mother got married many times so in addition to the moves, there was a revolving door of "fathers" that would come and go. With sparse visits from my birth father as he embarked on his own multiple marriages.

Strange.... I recently met a woman from Michigan and her parents had been married multiple times as well.They were also the same generation as my parents. Of the late 1950's ushering out a sort of innocence and in a rebellion. We were the casualties.

I must say though..... even with much despair, there still lived many magical moments. As is the case with childhood. It is the duality of life. We cannot have the good without the bad it seems. Don't blame me.  Have to talk to God about that one........

I lived here on Sunnyside from 1st grade through 5th grade. Ages 6 to about 11, if my math is correct. Although not perfect, this was the most idyllic time in my childhood before lies and deceit blew the illusion of this familial sand castle away.

 It was the early 70's and orange was a powerful color that reigned supreme from interior design to the clothes we wore. Our house was filled with it. Along with plastic mirrored walls and plastic parsons tables everywhere. That was quite a long stretch for orange. I remember it lasting well into the 6th and 7th grade. Awful to wear unless you are a woman of color. Especially on me as I was as pasty as they came.

It is strange what you remember as a child. Some have no memories at all. Too painful, they block them  out. Like a woman does with the pain of birthing her baby. A veil just silently and gently falls over the painful memories. Like the first snow signifying fall turning to winter. It is as white as a clean piece of paper. Silent. Dense in its colorlessness. Yet ripe with potential of truth to emerge. Or delusional stories born of a deep seated denial. What once helped them to survive, now prevents them to thrive.

Never wanting to become the queen of denial , I continue my daily work of pulling the pieces of me back together and attempting a sort of integration necessary after the disintegration of my particular childhood. Part of my way is to re-member with my little self. Sherri. Spelled S-H-E-R-R-I. I was instructed very clear of this specific spelling by my rarely present father in a bowling alley once as my brothers and I  put own names on the board above our heads. It made me feel special. The crumbs of knowing he and my mother had actually discussed the how of my name being spelled. Little, yes, but I took what I could get.

This morning on Facebook  I read a post from a girl I knew during this period of time. She reminded me she had the figure 8 pool. And that she too is a loud Michigan girl. I long to connect with her and remember her better. I am pretty sure I do. Hard to forget those coveted families that could actually afford a pool. I also believe she and I had some great times listening to Elton John at his finest. Bennie and the jjjjjeeettssss!!!!

As an actress one must explore the darker parts of one's personality. DKL taught me that well. Not to be afraid to shine a light into the dark recesses of my mind, my memories, and so I have. If you are at all close to me, you will be subjected to a similar scrutiny. I apologize in advance. I was always exploring this way as a child and the perfect career found me to continue this exploration. I believe as I have quoted too many times to count.

An unexamined life is not worth living.

Some of what I have found in getting my masters doing this deep, personal and worthy excavating my old treasures, has been my own personal stuff from this life. Some is literally thousands of years old passed through a lineage that for all intents and purposes I really know nothing about. Not on a conscience level anyway. I trust what I need to know will be revealed.

 I watched a documentary yesterday about an ancient cave that had recently been discovered. With were these beautiful, pristine images drawn on its walls. So much sparkly crystallization everywhere. When people crystallize in their dead beliefs it is not nearly as beautiful.  There were many animal bones, no human ones. It was clear the humans did not live here but came to do art. There was also foot prints of mainly animals.

One in particular stuck in my mind. It was that of an 8 year old boys footprint with a wolfs print next to it. It begged the question........ Did the wolf follow the boy into the cave as prey?  Did the two walk side by side as friends? Or was one print made at one point in time and the other at a later date?

I choose to believe they walked side by side as friends like in the book, The Old Turtle. A favorite book that I used to read to Myles as a child. I need a new one to share with my Christian as well. Wonderful book. It speaks of a time when all living creatures spoke the same language.

My path is not to masturbate with the pain of the past. It is to no longer deny it. To discover, uncover and recover. To pull all of me back together and not live life as a fragmented, sad and self-medicating person.My medication of choice is wine. It could be worse. Where to some this type of work is scary, to me this is sacred work that sets me free. I no longer which to be held emotionally hostage by my past. This is what works for me. My truth.

I was granted a beautiful memory during my morning prayers a few days ago. A piece of me I had forgotten. Another piece of the puzzle. I remembered when it would rain on Sunnyside. I have always loved the rain. Still do.  As a child it always signaled to me its time to get on some warm clothes and go play!!!!! I would try to flood the streets by putting newspaper all over the drains in the street. Praying for the entire width of the street to become a rushing river , not only on the sides of the slightly curved road.

I would jump in a boat, ride the river and go to where the wild things are.......

As this memory filled me up, I sat and prayed. It poured outside almost violently  but I could feel little Sherri's excitement. I could feel the memories of being bundled up with the strings of the hood pulled tight to cover my crazy sensitive ears. And feel the rain gently sprinkling on my face. Free.... as a child .... without  a stitch of make a woman it mattered not how wet I got. Free of a care of what "they" might think. Dancing around. Jumping in and out of puddles.

As I write I cannot help but smile. A bittersweet smile. The wonderful memory........ Along with a sort of wonder as to where all that joy went. I sometimes now feel it difficult to really have fun. I seek to rediscover that joy, that pleasure. I know I am on my way to finding this joy again. I am firmly on my path. Thanks to God. And some very special people in my life.

It may not seem like much but it was a huge piece of myself to reclaim. To give this part of me voice. A voice that was shut down by fearful adults. They did the best they could, this I know. I blame less and less but my reintegration is essential to coming out of this self-imposed chrysalis state.  I long to become a fully formed butterfly. Not the deformed one of the past. I say that with love and compassion for myself. I was deformed and misinformed. But it is a new day.

My step father on Sunnyside was a saint in my eyes. The best father I had. A very young man who took on an older woman and her 3 children. There were many good times with him. Kenny Moore. I will always have a special place for him in my heart. He was kind and good to me and my brothers. Showed up as our own blood father did not have the ability to. I love him always. More about him later.....

This is a sort of serial blog about Sunnyside. I will be a process of un-peeling layer upon layer. A needed purging for me. I will keep names out of this to protect some that choose to not explore these things as I do. They are allowed theirs and I mine. It is time.

I hope this may serve to help others to unlock the doors on their powerful and personal experiences as children and no longer keep them hidden away. Or less, to take them on an honest young person's journey in this complicated world during a time that was more innocent. And in a place 22831 Sunnyside, St. Clair Shores, Michigan that simple and innocent as well.

To be continued........


  1. I liked your focus on the colour orange and how it was all-pervasive in the seventies! I was born in 1976 and when I think back to that time, I too think of oranges, reds and browns. Funny how colours and smells can evoke such distant memories...maybe these sensory data served in place our then under-developed vocabularies? Keep paint such a poignant and yet vibrant and intensely personal picture in this latest blog entry. Cheers.

  2. Oh Sherilyn,I haven't checked your blog in a while...I am enjoying it again now. Thanks for writing,it makes me happy:)

  3. Love it! Can't wait to read more!

  4. Hello Sherilyn,

    I don't know if you remember me, but I'm one of your old "Tweetiebirds"..

    I'd really like to send you that TP-postcard (I've talked about) for you to sign, so maybe you could give me an adress to your agency (or somewhere you'll recieve it) to: ? :)



  5. Dear Sherilyn,
    Thanks for all that you share with us. God does have good intentions for us all and His light in us is a unique love we all are given. Wishing you the best for continued success with your blog. God bless, Sandy

  6. Hi, Its Sonny. I recently travelled from Australia to Columbus to meet you at the HorrorHound Convention in Ohio. (A mere bleep in your memory by now I'm sure but that's okay because the moment is safely stored in mine)LOL. I just wanted to say thank you for being so sweet and gracious and every bit as wonderful a person in "real life" as I imagined you to be! (To say the experience was a dream come true for me would be an understatement!)Upon returning home from HorrorHound I put on Diary of a Hitman(for about the 100th time)haha. Such a stunning film it is! Your portrayal of Jain is nothing short of brilliant and Roy Londons direction is understated perfection! (The scene where Dekker and Jain are sharing birthday cake around the table is just 'poetry') I hope at the time this film, and in particular you're performance in it recieved the recognition it so truely deserves! I heard somewhere that the main actors of this film were not paid much and basically donated their time as a favour to Roy London (due to their mutual love and respect for him.)I was wondering if you could tell me if this were true? Anyway my "comment" has now turned into a thesis and i haven't yet even made mention of the beauty of your latest blogg entry! Thank you so much for all of it! Your unwavering honesty is truely unique and its such a joy and a privilege to be let into your world in this way! Can't wait for the day that your book is sittiing alongside your photos as an addition for signing and purchase at one of these conventions...You can sign me up for 10! Your BIGGEST fan, Sonny.

  7. Hello sweet Sonny,
    How could I forget you...... Yes, what you heard was correct. This was an absolute labor of love. Love for Roy and getting to work with him. It was originally a play and Roy found it and said he was gonna rewrite it and show the world what I could do.... He was and still is such an important person in my life. Yes, he has passed but I have pictures of him in my home and hear his words of wisdom still alive and well in my everyday life. He was the father I always wished I had. It was too short of an amount of time that I had him in my life. He also told me I must have a child. That it would change everything in my life. And so I did. Was pregnant shortly there after. I just cannot share how special he was to me. I have many pics from filming of us on the set. Get me your email and I will let you know where to find me. Much love to you Sonny. God bless until we meet again. xxxooo

    1. Hi Sherilyn,
      If that was his goal he most certainly achieved it! Your performance in Diary of a Hitman is one of the finest in cinema history. Its one of those performances where I quite literally cannot imagine any other actor in the role…(at least not without it becoming a completely different film). Two examples of this that immediately spring to mind is Vivien Leigh in Gone With the Wind and Tim Curry in Rocky Horror Picture Show. (Actually come to think of it I think you could have pulled off the role of Scarlett as well!)LOL. But seriously what would have become of these films had any other actors been cast in the main roles?! For me the same feelings apply to Diary of a Hitman. I knew Roy London was your acting coach when I watched this for the first time many years ago and I always felt the role of Jain had (in one way or another) been purposefully created just for you. (much in the same way Audrey was for Twin Peaks.) What a gift to have this confirmed! There is such a special kind of magic going on in this film…and in your performance! Its indescribable really! To witness it is electric…and sublime! What a truely amazing man Roy London must have been to help make this happen! It certainly WAS the perfect vehicle to show the world what you were about. If only the industry could have seen what was so blatantly evident to Roy London, David Lynch and the rest of us adoring fans around the world! Love ya! Love reading your blogs! My email is Thanks, it would be really great to be kept in the loop.  xxx

  8. Hi S-H-E-R-R-I,

    I appreciate you, your writing style, and the wisdom you express here. It's pretty great that you are willing to share these aspects of your life. Actually no, let me rephrase that... it's pretty fucking awesome that you are so open and willing to do so. Kudos to you, baby! Keep it up. It's healthy.

    *I particularly like your reference to a butterfly. Although it's one of the bad (or good) songs from the 80s, I'll bring up Mr. Mister and 'Take These Broken Wings', as no doubt we've all done some wing repair over the years! You can thank me later for getting that song in your head now. ;)

    Sending the best of luck and warmest of regards from beautiful Prague, Czech Republic! I raise my glass of wine (or in my case, wonderful Czech beer) to you!!
    Andrea Baylis

  9. I'm not sure if it was intentional or not, but you're style of writing is very lyrical. The words dance off the screen which make it a joy to read, no matter the subject.

  10. I am once again captivated by one of your many talents...writing. u have such a way to express yourself and draw the reader in. I feel honored to read your sacred words and treasure the memories u share...keep writing..
    Chris Krenz-Kammer

  11. Dear Sherri,
    I actually met you yesterday at the Motor City Comic Con, and I was a bit nervous to meet you because I've looked up to you so much during this past year, but I'm so glad I did. You and your characters have been such great role models for me, and I'm so glad I finally got to meet you. It was absolutely worth it. You probably don't recall me, but I came back and visited you twice, I was just so nervous the first time around. I of course forgot to say all of the things I planned in my head, but that never works with anything anyways. I'm glad I mustered up the courage to ask for a hug and picture, that just made me feel like a million bucks. I'd honestly have to say, I'm one of your biggest fans and I adore you so much. As far as female role models go, I look up to you in the highest regard and hope someday I'll be as humble and great as you.
    I'm really enjoying reading throughout your whole blog, it means a lot to me because I have grown up in Michigan my entire life. It's so great to know someone that comes from a pretty similar background to myself can do so many great things; that's all I hope to do myself. Some days it's kind of hard though.
    You're a great role model, and I hope I have the opportunity to stay in touch with you sometime in the future. I've always wanted to get out there acting or singing wise (I've been interested in both since the womb), but as a 19 year old girl from Michigan, I lose hopes pretty easily. It's ladies like you that keep my head afloat and keep me shooting for higher stars.
    Please keep writing and staying as fantastic as you've always been.
    Love, Chelsea

    1. Of course I remember you Chelsea. Why lose hope when you are so young and have your whole life ahead of you. I would love to stay in touch with you and share whatever I can to help you on your journey in this wonderful life.
      Post to me your email and I will write you with mine and we CAN be in touch.
      With lots of love...xxxoooo

  12. Dear Sherri,

    I too am on the path of pulling all of me back together. To try and fill in all the blanks of the past so that I can have a better tomorrow. To recover, to organize the kaos. I am so with you on what you say about that whole subject. I have recently discovered a piece of me that I had forgotten. It might actually help me determine what I want to do with my future.

    I am going to the US for the first time in mid June and will be staying for 3 weeks, this is huge. I'm going to Los Angeles and San Diego. Maybe Burbank too. I would LOVE if you told me what in your opinion, I just have to see/try/experience. Doesn't have to be just one thing. I want you to be part of this travel :-) I'm 32.

    I also love the rain! Love the smell and how it sprinkles on the face. The sound. To me it brings hope of a new beginning, a fresh start. Even adventure, magic. And as if that wasn't good enough, you might even see a rainbow :-) What bliss.

    Thank you for being there and writing, it is a joy to read. You make my journey a better one.

    PS: I know I have to swing by the Lynch Foundation's LA office. I love that man.

  13. Hi Sherilyn, I don't know if you read this comments but anyway I just wanted to tell you that I'm a big fan from the Twin Peaks years, when I was like 12 years old...I'm writing from Chile so you know you have fans in the southest place on earth....I think is really cool that you share your thoughts on this blog and give us the possibility to follow your career even from far away...well I don't know what else to write....I'm sorry if my english is a bit rusty...
    I wish you love and success in all your professional and personal projects

  14. Hi,

    Glad to see you have a blog, of course I know you from that show back in the early 90's. I just saw on youtube an interview you did with a norwegian television show, and I just want to give you kudos for not settling for work you didn't believe in. Awesome.


  15. Hi Sherilyn, I enjoyed your thoughts, and thank you for sharing your comments. There are many things in my life that changed how I view life, some I have been able to face and address with new direction, but many that continue to direct my every day existence. It does not rule us, but it does still overshadow everything we do. I have fond memories, much as you, but in the secret parts of our hearts we have closely guarded nightmares waiting to come out. Is this true of all? I hope not for my kids sake. Love your thoughts and your work, so hopefully one day we can meet. FYI, I love St. Clair Shores, first visiting in 1986 for business I fell in love with the place and people. I've traveled all over the world, and people are people, but some are a bit better than others. Luv ya.

  16. Hi Sherilyn!
    I'm a new fan of yours and I'm so happy to discover your blog here. I love how honest you are and your continual insistence upon the truth! It's quite refreshing.
    As I was reading through your blog this entry just struck a chord with me. I know just what you mean about trying to return to a lost joy from childhood. It's funny because your story of playing in the rain reminded me so much of a cherished memory I have (it's hard to think of any other moments in life when I remember being as completely happy). And in the last year or so I've just been trying to find that person again and wondered what in the heck changed me. Anyways, I guess I just felt a kindred spirit with you and I'm so glad God is giving you the chance to remember things like that. I know for me, He is my true source of joy. And I definitely believe and pray he will continue to overwhelm you with blessings and joy.

    Peace :D

    Isaiah 35:

  17. This comment has been removed by the author.

  18. Being in Southern California.. in the heat of July's summer rays.. as the years pass.. the summer rains I miss so of my hometown in Grand Rapids..MI..what I felt through your words are similar in essence of the innocent pure lights of our eyes as children.. even though as the rains still come i still dance and walk and play in the nurturing rainbows of light.. some days and months and years we will pass.. the inner-child is an essence that is always with us.. as we grow it becomes harder to hear.. but in some of us this realization does not escape us.. so it is a pleasure to listen to your song of memories as it reminds me of my inner-essence.. a simpler view of not knowing what is.. yet just living and being.. namaste

  19. Dear Sherilyn,

    I thought I would try to reach you through your blog to say THANK YOU. It has been an honor to meet you at the Chicago Comic Con last Friday.

    I am the French native journalist (as a second job) you kindly accepted to spend some time with but I am also a big fan of your work (Twin Peaks of course but not only, I've seen most of your movies/tv shows and I encourage my friends an my wife to do the same!).

    Talking to you during this brief interview made me understand even more why you can act so well.

    If your time allows, I hope I will have a chance to interview you longer in the future (the magazine I'm writting for typically has an on line version that could post a longer interview).

    I'm now almost done with my article about Comic Con, Twin Peaks and mainly yourself and I will circulate it soon for publication if everything goes well. I'm working on both a French and an English versions.

    Thank you again for your time and for inspiring me through your work. I hope I will have a chance to hear from you again soon.

    Best wishes,

  20. Hello Sherilyn,

    I really do not know if you will ever read this but as a young woman who wants to find her place in this world and make something of herself I really must tell you that you are one of my biggest inspirations. And not purely because you once played Audrey horne in Twin Peaks (whom I do absolutely love, just to be clear! Hehe) but because of your attitude to Hollywood and life in general.

    I want to be an actress one day, but it is because I feel alive and happy when adopting a character role and losing myself in the wonderful mind of a character; and not because I want to be rich and famous. I just want to make a living out of something I truly feel I am talented at and which makes me very happy.

    I have read through your blog and you are a wonderful woman and seem very kind hearted.

    I'm starting to ramble now, which is embarrassing but I am just a girl from a small town in England who wants to seize the world in my own insignificant way and shape it how I see fit.

    And in a world where I sometimes personally feel that as a young girl this is hard to achieve I must again thank you for being such a wonderful role model to people like me! Whether you wanted that or not.

    All of the very best,

  21. Hi Sherilyn,

    I remember watching Twin Peaks when it first came out but never really got into it. Then the other night I was watching a re-run of Psych & it was the one that was dedicated to Twin Peaks. You were so awesome. I am now watching all episodes of Twin Peaks on Netflix.

    You are such a cool person. I always liked your work. I just found your blog & absolutely love it!!!
    Your style of writing has a way of drawing in the reader, making them feel like they are part of the story. Maybe it is because so many can identify.

    Memories of childhood are bittersweet. I think childhood represents a place we would all like to get back to. That time of innocence before life gets in the way.

    It is nice to see that you are an honest, intelligent, wise individual with depth & character. You always came across as real & also very hip. I think that's why I admire you so much :)

    Please keep blogging!

    God bless,
    Kim from Austin, TX

  22. Dear Sherilyn:

    First, tremendous work. The orange takes me back, that reddish-orange plastic red was around a few times in my early memories as well, in my room I had a red sun of a lamp, that color of plastic, and also a plane. Beyond that, you show so much of your soul.

    Please know that you have touched many people, and many people all over the world care deeply for you. Whatever the beginnings you have gone on from them to go all over the world. Big ups to you!

    David Powell in New Jersey

  23. Memories, childhood and innocence, how simple the most basic of sounds, the sound of rain to trigger those long forgotten.

    I forgot the bedroom where I lived from 6 years to 14 or 15 was orange...interesting.


  24. Dear Sherilyn,

    I have been debating on whether to write this to you for fear of you thinking I’m crazy or weird or scary.

    You have been a huge influence on my life. My childhood was a mess of violence and upheaval. I had very few stable influences in my life. I was 9 years old when Twin Peaks came on the air. The show spoke to my soul. I had already seen Dune and was a big fan of David Lynch and Kyle MacLachlan. (I was a weird kid. Try explaining to normal 5th graders that you want to be a Bene Gesserit, it will get you ostracized quicker than you can blink!) I was drawn to the show as a whole, but particularly to your character. Audrey was bold, intelligent, and not afraid to go after what she wanted. She was both innocent and worldly. She was beautiful in a 1950s Elizabeth Taylor sort of way. Not a tanned, empty-headed, bleach blonde, math-is-hard-let’s-go-shopping kind of way. I needed that in a role model. I needed your influence in my turbulent, crazy childhood. You gave me focus and hope.

    In a strange twist of fate, about the time Twin Peaks got cancelled, my life when into a tailspin. I won’t go into all the gory details, but basically a lot of bad things happened in the next decade (more than a decade, actually) that brought me very close to ending it all. So, I tucked all my Twin Peaks memories away in a safe place where they couldn’t be harmed. All my Audrey Horne it’s-ok-to-be-smart-AND-sexy memories needed protected from the molestation of life and growing up and all the abuse that came with it.

    A few years ago, I was sitting at my computer and I was suddenly flooded with all my memories of Twin Peaks. It was as if my life was finally safe enough for them to come out. I had to look up the show to make sure I hadn’t dreamed the whole thing. I bought the gold box set. I shared Twin Peaks with my husband and my two best friends, who had never watched it when it was on the air. I fell in love with the show all over again, but with the new eyes and heart of adulthood. I love Audrey Horne even more now. I love you. So, I went and bought Boxing Helena (which is one of my favorites), Two Moon Junction, Three of Hearts, Diary of a Hitman, True Blood, Darkness Falls, Fatal Instinct, Of Mice and Men, Wild at Heart, and Meridian. Even when the film isn’t so great, you are great in it. For example, while I think that Two Moon Junction had potential, it felt too disjointed and too focused on the sex scenes and not focused enough on what April was struggling with. I do love the scene where they are eating breakfast and she talks about her grandmother and two moon junction. Your delivery is perfect, so honest. Anyway, I am rambling and getting weird.

    I only recently learned you had a blog and have gone back and read all the entries. I don’t know if you have abandoned it at this point, but I sure hope not. For years, I worshipped you as my role model, as my idol. But your blog shows so much of who you are as a person, that now I truly wish I knew you personally, because I think we have a lot in common. So often, you are putting into words the exact thoughts I have had in my head. I believe we think alike, and may have arrived at some of the same conclusions through similar childhood experiences, or maybe just similar reactions to life experiences.

    Heh. I’ve gone on so long; I’m not sure how to close this. This is the first real “fan letter” I’ve ever written. Ok, so, I hope you see this and that it reminds you that you are not alone and that the work you have done has made a difference in the world. Even if only to a scared little girl whose sanity you saved.

    I’d love you have you as a facebook friend, but I imagine you save that only for people you know personally. That’s ok. I love you anyway. :) (Hey this may be my only chance to ask, I figured I’d give it a shot!)

    Wishing you the best in all of your endeavors,
    Elizabeth Andersen

    P.S. Let us know when your book comes out. I’m all ready to pre-order it!

  25. Dear Mrs. Sherilyn,

    I really enjoyed this article and I would like to express my gratitude for your inspiring insightfulness. I'm really glad that your life is blessed with fulfilled moments despite the occasional misery cast upon you. Childhood should be a sweet immortal shelter for every human soul.

    With respect,
    Emmanouil from Greece.

  26. Are all Detroiters masochists ? It was like listening to my wife. You escaped I say, why do you keep going back ? Never again says she, only to be found out later looking at flights. I give up.