So, I went to see an old drama school friend perform his new one man show the other night. It was my second time seeing it because the first time I was so moved and then so mad at myself for not bringing people with me. So this time I got to share it with friends. I want the world to see it because I think it’s a beautiful piece and he’s touched on some profound universal truths. It’s that rare show where you are laughing and enjoying the ride and then suddenly you realize you’re sobbing because you’ve just heard something so true it hurts. After the show, I got to see some of his family, who I had only met once back in college, so had not seen in many, many years. I was talking to his brother who suddenly asked me, “so what are you DOING?!” The question stopped me in my tracks. I am rarely at a loss for words, but I literally couldn’t speak. Nothing came out. I mean, nothing. This never happens to me. I think after a long pause I said something like, “I don’t know, you know?” and just let his sister keep talking. Awkward times ten. So in the days afterwards, I kept coming back to that moment. Why did that question stop me like that? And I guess it was because it was so “loaded”. I realized in that second that he had no idea of the three year struggle I was just barely coming out of and so it was like, where do I even begin because anything I say is going to be either too much or too little. How, in a moment, do you explain to someone that my day, which had consisted of making breakfast for my family, chatting and singing with my son on the way to school, going on a 4 mile walk on a gorgeous day, cleaning house, doing laundry, shopping for dinner, picking up my son and hearing about his day, helping him with his homework, making and having dinner together, then picking up my girlfriends and sitting through a 2 hour show (there was a second one-act), standing around all evening enjoying my friends, all while in heels….was all cause for celebration and gratitude? That even 6 months ago, I couldn’t begin to imagine having a day like that. How, when I was ill, it was those very simple acts that I longed for, wished for, prayed for every single day? What became so crystal clear in those days was the value of life itself. The simple beauty of every day. The simple path. That stress is a choice and that every day you can choose life. I have never in my life felt so alive, so close to God, so true to myself and so open to possibility. It has been the blessing that came out of all of it and I feel it is my honor and privilege to keep living this way, even after the storm has passed. So, I don’t really know what my cocktail party answer should be to that question, but I do know what the answer is……”paying attention.”
Fear Factor: Canine Edition & Dancing with my Demons/ Fridays 8pm Feb. 4,11,18,25 tix: $20 http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/142340
The Missing Piece Theatre 2811 W. Magnolia Blvd., Burbank, CA 91505 (818) 426-6440 Call for reservations & say “Delicious” (name of the one-act series) for $5 off.