I had intended this to be the blog entry I’d post immediately following the closing of Dancing Lessons, the play I just finished at Barrington Stage Company, but then the #IceBucketChallenge kind of took the spotlight on that day. Hard to top that moment! But now I can circle back.
When Patrick and I were driving home from the Berkshires the day after I closed the play he pointed out something we’ve talked about on many occasions in the past, a life lesson if you will, that we’ve learned over and over to be true . . . You can think something is never gonna get better, but then, it does.
You never know what’s just around the bend.
Two days before I auditioned for Dancing Lessons. Just two days. I had stomached an acting class that made me question whether or not I had any talent at all. I had even contemplated giving up the business. Like, for real. I wanted to just quit. I took to my bed. I hid from my friends and from myself, I pouted, and threw a pity party for one that would rival Eeyore.
To put it more plainly, I was sad.
But here I was, traveling back to NYC, having just starred in the world premiere of a brand new play, having received rave reviews, and having had the time of my life!!!! Working with an incredible co-star in John Cariani, a humble, lovable playwright in Mark St. Germaine, and a director of fierce commitment and drive in Julianne Boyd was a real gift. I grew tremendously through the run of the play. I was challenged. I was excited. I was enthralled.
To put it more plainly, I was happy.
Now, if I had really stayed in bed the day of the audition, as I intended to do, and not dragged myself in, begrudgingly, but still, I would have never known the joy and light waiting for me just around the bend.
I feel a little preachy when I start pontificating in my blog, but sometimes it helps to just say it. I know it helps me to reinforce it for myself. And I wonder sometimes who it might help in the moment. Sometimes just hearing something at a particular time can make a difference.
So here it is. A life lesson . . . Be open. Do not close down.
To put it more plainly . . . Never give up.
Here is me and John Cariani and our director, Julie Boyd, putting the finishing touches on a mural at the theater — a tradition in many theaters across the country. It’s a wonderful way to cement the memories. It’s an artistic “we were here”.
Lyrics from Disney’s Pocahontas’ “Just Around the River Bend”
What I love most about rivers is:
You can’t step in the same river twice
The water’s always changing, always flowing
But people, I guess, can’t live like that
We all must pay a price
To be safe, we lose our chance of ever knowing
What’s around the river bend
Waiting just around the river bend
I look once more
Just around the river bend
Beyond the shore
Where the gulls fly free
Don’t know what for
What I dream the day might send
Just around the river bend
Coming for me
Yay for you! That is an excellent life lesson. And. Have you heard of Ali Edwards? She’s a scrapbooker/photographer/teacher and she does the One Little Word project. Basically on January 1, you choose one little word to motivate and inspire you all year. And reading this made me think of her One Little Word in 2013 – it was “open” http://aliedwards.com/2012/12/one-little-word-2013
Mine this year is “think”. And now, come to think of it, I’ve kind of lost that focus…anyway – I distinctly remembered her having the necklace that said ‘open’ – you need one!!!
Pontificate away, baby. I always learn so much from your blogs.
To put it more plainly…you’re fabulous.
And you were MORE than fabulous in the play. I am lucky I got to see it twice. I’m twice that lucky that you are my friend.
This was exactly what I needed today! A) Thrilled for you and the “wrapping” of this new project. Deeeeeeear! You’re wonderful, deeeeeeeear! And B) Why is you so wise?
Love you, PD. And I miss you more than I can say.
I have a habit of shutting down too. But you are right. I need to keep trying. Although, most of the time that “keep trying” means going to the behavioral health ward for a time until the doc gets my meds fixed up again, but I guess, whatever it means for each person. I gotta keep going. Not just stop and quit. That could be gross, huh? LOL?