Sunday, February 15, 2009

If I Only Had the Nerve

They don't call it "Hell Week" for nothing.

Today was the start of a very long week for me. We were in the theatre all day posing as walking and talking props for the crew who are trying to work out the sound and lighting cues for the show. We've done Italian runs and lines runs and just plain running lines, but we haven't done an actual "acting" run in what seems like forever. Tomorrow night we do a Tech Run. Tuesday and Wednesday we do Dress Runs. Thursday, we open the show. And I'm starting to lose my nerve.

Hell, I HAVE lost my nerve.

I've been trying to figure out why.

The other night, while watching Americal Idol (Have you been watching this season? WOW. The singers are AWESOME. Truly exciting.), I finally got it. This means so much to me. More than ever before. I mean, a show opening is always important. Always. I'm not professional, but I try to conduct myself in all my productions as if I am.

I haven't done a show in four years. Four. Long. Years. And then some.

There are people coming to the show who have never seen me act. And that scares me. It scares the living crap out of me. It used to be the kind of thing that excited me, and now it has the exact opposite effect. It's one thing to say that you're an actor, and another thing entirely to prove that you are. People can only judge for themselves based on what they see, especially if they've never seen anything else.

But perhaps that is not exactly the crux of the matter. The fact is that this is the one thing I have right now that is just about me. No one else. And if I don't do this well, where does it leave me? Who am I? I mean, I can't tell you the number of times in the past few years that I have been referred to as C's mum, or just "Mum". Frequently. It's not bad. It's a badge I wear proudly. But one time, a while back, someone asked me what my name was, and I had to stop and think about it. I actually forgot for a second. Weird, huh? Who forgets their own name??

Not to mention that the whole transition to SHAM (uh, SAHM) has been much easier for the simple fact that I am in a play. I am enjoying my time at home because I know that it is balanced with an equal and opposite time away from home. A time without sticky fingers and snotty noses. As of March 7th, that will no longer be true. And that scares me too.

I want to be good. I want to prove the I have skills that don't involve organizing playdates and providing a variety of snack foods for endlessly empty stomachs. I want my family to be proud of me - even the two people who are too small to see the show. I want to renew my faith in myself as someone who has outside talents and interests. I want to make this time that I've spent away from my family, and the countless people that I've inconvenienced for it, worth it.

I want to find the nerve.

And I want this small person in my gut, the one who says I can't do it and I'll never be good enough - good, yes, but never good "enough" - to shut up and go away already. I am sick to death of listening to her. She is killing my buzz. Goodbye.


Anonymous said...

You'll do good! Close your eyes and believe in yourself and don't listen to "her"!!

painted maypole said...

oh, oh, you are going to be FABULOUS, fear not. hell weeks suck, always, always, always. but YOU will not suck. You will be fabulous. and OH how I wish I could see you.

you are obviously passionate and smart, and I truly trust that you are talented. YOu've worked hard. It will pay off. It's important. it IS.

have fun. PLAY.


(would love to hear how things are going with the director, etc, etc)

Mamalooper said...

Breathe...and know that we'll be on "your" side when we see you this next weekend!

ewe are here said...

I'm sure you're going to be wonderful... and you'll slide right back into the on-stage groove.

Wish I was there to see it.

Kyla said...

How nerve wracking!! I think how you are feeling is completely normal. I do something similar to myself before every exam, I'm sure I'll fail that I haven't studied enough, that there is no possible way I can do well...inevitably, I land a nice solid A and wonder why I was fussing so much over it.

You'll do well, I know it.

Mac and Cheese said...

I COMPLETELY get what you are saying about having your own identity independent of your dependents. I'm certain all this hard work of yours will pay off.

Beck said...

I think that everyone has that jerky voice sometimes, right? And it's figuring out when you just need to ignore it and go ahead that's part of the work of adulthood.

It's funny, the SAHM thing. It's very much part of who I am now and I don't think about it, but I remember worrying that I was going to vanish into the background at one point. You'll figure out the right balance for you, I'm certain.

Woman in a Window said...

You are doing it. That is validation beyond what I could hope to have. You'll do it brilliantly!

Anonymous said...

i can completely understand how you'd forget your own name sometimes

kittenpie said...

So this play is Proof in more than one way, then? Heh. But really, with the passion you have for this, I have absolutely not a speck of doubt. You are going to rock this, and I'll tell you all about how awesome you are after seeing you with my own eyes this weekend.

Lisa b said...

Break a leg baby. I am quite upset I am not going to be able to see the play but reading this I realise there will be more opportunities ( or perhaps an extended run due to your stellar performance?)

I'm working on a research project at the moment and had a few of the same feelings about being away too long.

All Rileyed Up said...

Oh, I hope one day to be back on a stage performing something, anything. I'm sure these exact feelings would be running through my mind, but right now, I can only feel envy of your dilemma.

metro mama said...

You were wonderful. We all enjoyed the show so much. Enjoy the rest of your performances!