Holy Slacker Batman! I just realized that it has been over 9 months since my last post on here! I apologize for being such a slacker, I guess I’ve been a bit busy and uninspired to write. Not that I didn’t have plenty to write about, I believe I did, I just didn’t make the time to do it. I am going to try to get better at it and post a little more frequently!
Things have been crazy for me for the last year, to say the least. At the end of May last year I was laid off from the job I absolutely loved at Northfield Block. I was crushed, even though I wasn’t fired, it still sucked and thought about how I could have done lots of things different but realized that it was the economy’s fault and there was nothing I could do about it. I spent 6 months unemployed! Of course the day after I signed on to do another show at the same time as 3 others I was working on, I got a job. That has been an experience to say the least, whether it is a good one or bad, I haven’t yet decided, I’ll say this, I’m still there…
I have been working on some sort of theater related show since November of 2008! Starting with Up the Down Staircase all the way to closing The Philadelphia Story this past weekend, I haven’t had more than one week off between shows, if I had that. Luckily, my brain got a hold of me and said, “No, you are not going to work on the MHS Alumni show! You need a BREAK!” so I am only doing Summer workshop which is only one night a week! Hopefully it will get me rested up for next season, which should be spectacular!
Right now I am concentrating on doing my job as Membership/Hospitality Director as I am up for re-election this September and am pretty sure I”m not ready to hang up my gloves just yet! So I will try my hardest to post on here a bit more frequently and hopefully some amazing posts are coming your way!
“The test results came back this week, and though I’m sure they were no surprise to you, they sure knocked the wind outta my sails. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, ALS, better known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. The pain and weakness in my ankles is just the beginning. It is going to slowly work its way up my body, paralyzing me as it goes, until finally it reaches my lungs and I’ll die. There is no cure.”
These words above have nothing to do with me other than the fact that I had to say them this weekend, however they are not true. I do not have ALS; I am not in any way shape or form sick with anything like it. I was helping my friends, Wendi and John with a Liturgical Dramas at their church. I played a character named Annie in a monologue called POOLSIDE. From time to time their church will present a short, and by short I mean usually no longer than 5-7 minutes long, performance during the service that delivers a message to all who attend the service. I’ve been involved on a few of them and they are all different. Once there was one about three people getting a Q & A session with St. Peter, another involved a businessman who had trouble keeping his phone calls straight between a business partner and his pastor, and one on Good Friday highlighting what Jesus went through for his children. Sometimes they are funny, most of the time they are full of valuable lessons and sometimes they are just an extremely powerful message that makes you think.
This one was no exception. I had to play a woman who had been diagnosed with ALS, and was asking Jesus for a miracle to make her well again. She also wondered if she would deserve such a miracle as miracles are far and few between. She had heard her Pastor tell the story of Jesus at the pool of Bethesda in Jerusalem where he healed a lame man that couldn’t get to the healing waters himself. She wrestled with why Jesus chose that man instead of the many who sat by the pool with broken limbs waiting for an Angel to stir the water so they could be the first to step in and be healed. Didn’t they all deserve to be healed? Why only pick that one man? She also wondered if she was deserving of such a miracle herself. Playing this character was not an easy task for me by any means. I do not have ALS or any other life threatening disease; therefore I do not know what it would be like to receive that kind of news or have to ask for a miracle of this magnitude. All I could do was to imagine how I would feel if I were to receive news like that. That in itself is not easy to do because you would always like to think that you’d a lot better to things like that than you actually do, you can never really know how it would feel or how you would react until it actually happens to you.
I tried and tried to figure out how I would feel, getting this piece of traumatic news. Between what I was coming up with and some helpful thoughts from Wendi in her directing of the scene, I was able to come up with things to think about if it was me. How would I tell my husband? How would I tell the rest of my family or my friends? I couldn’t find the answers to those questions, but I believe it at least invoked some of the correct emotions I would need to do this monologue. I tried thinking of how if this had been me, that I may not ever meet the baby my sister is pregnant with, or wouldn’t get to see my nephew grow up. These things really hit an emotional chord with me. Of course this all began coming together at the last minute though. The entire rehearsal period, I thought I had the right emotions where they needed to be, but they were never quite right. It wasn’t until Sunday morning running through it before the service with Wendi and she reminded me that there was an ebb and flow to the piece. I doubt she realizes it but that helped me more than I had expected it to. Soon it was time for the first performance.
I waited anxiously just outside of the sanctuary for my light cue to enter. I walked out with my cane, hoping the audience could see the pain when I walked. I took my place on the bench and began talking. The words came effortlessly and I felt as though I really had the church goers that morning entranced. I finished the piece, waited for the blackout and quickly exited the sanctuary. I truly felt as though I had done everything I had wanted and that Wendi tried to get me to do. I was so overcome with emotion that I actually started to cry. I’m not sure if they were tears of relief to have gotten through it or tears of emotion because I really felt the words that I was saying. It took me a few minutes to calm down enough to go out to the lobby where I would eventually greet the guests when the service was over. I didn’t tell anyone how I was feeling, as I wasn’t and still aren’t sure of the reason.
The second service performance was pretty shaky for me. I’m not sure if I was just expecting too much from it or what, but within three lines I was already making mistakes and unfortunately it flustered me and I don’t feel as though I did as well as the first time. People still came up to me after the service and told me what a nice job I did and I am truly thankful for all the kind words I received from people, but inside I was mad at myself for not doing a good job on the second one. I wished I could have reprised the first performance, but apparently it wasn’t in the cards. I just hope for the sake of John and Wendi that I didn’t let them down and hopefully I did some justice to the piece.
Here is a continuation from the last post, sorry it took so long! Still working on a title though!
Jenna woke up in a very unfamiliar place and panicked. Grant quickly grabbed her hand to calm her down while Jason gently held her shoulders down. Jenna, with a wild look on her face, snatched her hand back and with little effort was able to push Jason across the room and against the wall. He was not a small man by any means, but it looked as if he had momentarily become a ragdoll when she pushed him. She also began to shake violently and started muttering unintelligible things. She started to try and get up to go after Jason.
“Jenna STOP!” Grant exclaimed as he grabbed her face and turned it towards him. Immediately her face changed and she uttered his name then began to cry. He held onto and comforted her as he repeatedly told her it was ok. Jason hadn’t been hurt, more shocked than anything. He sat on the other side of her and held her free hand. After a few minutes she calmed down and sat back against the chair she was in.
They asked her what she remembered, “I remember being on top of the building and getting ready to test out if it was true that people felt a presence and the urge to jump. The next thing I remember is seeing Derrick covered in blood… Oh my god, what happened?” Jenna asked. They filled her in on what had taken place and that she had been released from the hospital and Dave and Derrick brought her back to the hotel to rest because Derrick had a feeling that something was wrong that conventional medicine couldn’t fix. She wasn’t sure how they talked anyone in to letting her leave while unconscious.
“You weren’t exactly unconscious!” Derrick commented as he walked into the room. He came over and they hugged each other tightly. “You were conscious, but I don’t believe it was really you.”
He said that she had regained consciousness in the hospital, but wasn’t acting like herself, however did manage to get released. The doctor talked Dave into taking him some tranquilizers in case she became agitated later on. In the car on the way to the hotel she started talking a lot of nonsense and started getting violent so under great protest Dave injected one of the tranquilizers. He did mention that she was able to fight off Dave for a while, which would have been hard to believe if she hadn’t seen what happened with Jason a few moments earlier. Grant and Jason filled Derrick in on what had happened before he arrived. Jenna just sat there with a look of shock on her face, she had no idea how she could have fought off Dave, or better yet, push Jason across the room. It was unbelievable to her and she kept asking why, no one had an answer for her.
They were standing at the top of the building, where the guide had said many people had felt a presence and felt like they should run towards the edge and jump. She assured them nothing would happen, she wouldn’t even get close to the edge. Derrick was in place to stop her. She stood about 50 feet back from the edge and started to meditate and open herself to the spirits.
Suddenly her eyes popped open and she started running for the edge, No one really expected this to happen as they thought the claim was just a rumor. As she got closer to Derrick’s spot to stop her, he started to stop her but felt like he hit a wall and couldn’t move! Something was stopping him and she was getting closer to the edge than anyone wanted her to, but they were all stuck, no one could do anything. As a last ditch effort Derrick lunged with full force and managed to tackle her about a foot from the edge!
Everyone else rushed over to see if they were okay. “Derrick, Jenna are you guys ok?” Said Dave.
“I am, I think, but I’m not so sure about Jenna.” Derrick replied. Jenna hadn’t gotten up yet or even moved. Derrick and Dave both reached to shake her and she didn’t move. They rolled her over and her face and arm and both hands were bloody from sliding on gravel when they landed. Jenna wasn’t breathing!
Dave exclaimed, “I have a pulse but she’s not breathing!”
“What do we do Dave?” Derrick asked panicked.
Instinctively Dave started giving Jenna mouth to mouth resuscitation, while Donna and Mike called 911. Derrick sat next to her holding her hand and urging her to breathe and wake up! It seemed like forever and Dave was about to give up, her pulse was getting very low and really hard to find, he gave it one last try and thankfully, she started coughing and breathing again. All of a sudden she bolted upright and screamed. She startled both guys and the others around who were keeping their distance. She turned and saw Derrick and reached for him and they sat there hugging for what seemed like hours until the paramedics got there. He picked her up to put her on the stretcher and she saw blood on his shirt.
“Oh My God Derrick, you’re bleeding!” Jenna said as she passed out. She had seen the blood from her face on his shirt, but Derrick was bleeding on one of his arms. One of the paramedics took care of him during the ride to the hospital in the ambulance. Along the way Jenna was in and out of consciousness and not making much sense when she did speak. The paramedic assured Derrick that she would be fine. Derrick wasn’t so sure.
The only reason I ended up finding this particular song is because a friend quoted part of it as his facebook status yesterday. The quote looked familiar to me and I asked where it was from, his answer didn’t ring a bell to me. However it did intrigue me enough to want to find it and see if the rest of the song meant anything to me. What I found was that, while I didn’t know the song, it does mean something to me and has inspired this post. For this, I thank you Lee!
In some way I think I have been waiting for a miracle to arrive, maybe I have been waiting for several miracles to arrive. None have shown up yet and I’m getting tired of waiting. Of course that’s the problem, I’ve been waiting for a sign, a moment, something that would give me the information I was looking for. Waiting is the problem; waiting doesn’t get anything accomplished except maybe add to the stress of waiting! I think I am done waiting. Suddenly the confusion over waiting and doing something are drifting away like the ashes in the song.
A couple of weeks ago I finished up a show that I had been working on for over two months. The community theater group I belong to, The Kirk Players, joined forces with the High School to produce a show that we as KP couldn’t do on our own, it called for 18 student age people, we barely have 5. The joint venture proved to be successful yet challenging, in sync yet chaos, a wonderful experience, yet at sometimes a bit of torture. Looking back on it now, it was a wonderful experience despite all the hiccups along the way. This show was special to me for two reasons. I was one of the Assistant Directors and we were doing all the rehearsing in the school Auditorium, the same auditorium I did shows in high school.
Holy Moly did it bring back memories and emotions. By the end of the show on closing night, I was very emotional about the show being over. It brought back the feelings and emotions that I had during the last show of my senior year. It was tradition that the seniors ended up crying on the last night of the show, but I never understood why. I got a rude awakening the last night of the show, I was fine until I saw a friend crying and I lost it. I said I was going to flunk and come back again the next year, of course this would be difficult in May of my senior year but I didn’t care. I thought I would never be able to do another show ever again. The current show was coming to a close and I was not handling it very well. I avoided my cast after the curtain call because I was afraid I’d break down crying, I kept avoiding certain situations because I didn’t want to cry. I knew this was not my last show, yet it still felt like that senior show to me. By the time I actually left the school to head to the restaurant where people were gathering to celebrate I started to cry. I thought I had finished when I pulled into my parking spot, I got out and went in with people from the group. I got to the table, and immediately went to the washroom and started crying again. I decided maybe I needed a few more minutes to cry, so I went back to the tables, got my coat and said I’d be right back. I had no idea what was in store for me when I made it to my truck. I hysterically cried for a good 15 minutes. I was crying so hard that I ended up making myself sick and decided to just go home. I didn’t want to burden my friends inside with this stuff.
I told that story to get to this point. Yes while Omega may mean last, not everything has a last sometimes it just changes. This also means that while I may have been waiting for miracles to happen, I am by no means on my last hope. Every good thing must come to an end, even not so good things too! While the show closing brought many emotions I had to realize that it was not my last show. I have many more years to come in the theater and am looking forward to those; however I need a new version of me to experience them. Since the show has been over I have been thinking a lot clearer on many things. I have decided that I cannot wait for miracles to change me; I have to make the changes myself. In the last two weeks I have decided to eat healthier and get a lot more exercise because I have big dreams and goals to accomplish this year! I have approached the whole thing in a totally different way this time and it appears to be working so far! I am way excited about it and will do posts on my continued success.We believed in heaven, we believed in angels With arms of purest white To hold us, catch us when we fall
I do believe in Heaven and Angels, in fact they are all around us. To me, Heaven is remembering to be thankful for everything I do have and not worry so much about the things I am not in control over. The feeling that comes from that can be like heaven! Angels are all of my friends who support me even when I tend to forget that they do. Apparently I’ve been tripping and falling for some time and all the while they were there catching me and holding me when I need it. If it hadn’t have been for my friends after the show, who really cared about what was wrong, I could still be lost among the torrid emotions that engulfed me so deep. Friends will always be there for you when you need them! It is through this whole process that I believe I am on my way to becoming a better me! Friends inspire you, comfort you, help you and love you no matter what. I need to remember that a bit more often.
Lyrics to Poison’s “Something to believe in”
A lost soul, I guess you could say that is what I’ve been feeling like lately. I hope everyone who regularly, at least as regularly as I post, read this can forgive me for not writing in so long. I’ve been wanting to write, I just haven’t been able to do it. Nothing in my head wants to come out on to the screen for all to read! That being said I apologize for what may come out now…
Have you ever felt like this? Like you were cold and empty, your smile fading away? It’s a scary thought and an even scarier place to be. Sometimes I feel like I spend some nights fighting to not lose it and cry at things, especially when I have no control over them. The last time I felt like this was almost two weeks ago, the week of my birthday. Now I have a small group of close friends, those whom you’d do anything for and vice versa. However this year I didn’t even get a Happy Birthday text from two of them. This is the second year they have forgotten about my birthday, last year I thought it was just a fluke due to another party that was thrown and I was ok with that, but this year, there was nothing else going on. This makes me sad, I had most all of my “facebook” friends wish me a happy brithday, people I haven’t seen in years, but not from two of my closest friends. I just don’t know how to deal with that. I kind of did feel cold and empty, even if Ican’t get together with friends, I at least try to send them a text, or call them or e-mail…SOMETHING!
My smile has been fading for a long time now and that pretty much put me over the edge of where I am comfortable. Right now I am even afraid of being too honest here and creating trouble for myself. Maybe I’ll try this again in a week or so, it just isn’t working right now. I’m sorry.