acting · action · courage · direction · faith · intuition · letting go · maturity · performance · poetry

Just Row, Darling, Just Row.

So, I’m feeling both immensely relieved, and a bit of an
emotional hangover from all of the worry and intense “gotta get it done”ness of
the school semester. I finally finished
my paper for my Shakespeare class, and emailed it to the teacher last night at 9pm.
Granted, it was
only six pages,
but this whole working plus school thing really walloped what I was able to
give to school, and squished everything else into weekends that wasn’t school
and school sort of got shunted along every day, moving down my calendar like a
shuffle board disc – I can do it tomorrow, I can do it tomorrow. Like Scarlet
O’Hara – After all tomorrow is another day.
Which may be true, but tomorrow has been another day of
intense activity, and not in any way better than the day before it.
So, the paper is done. My third out of 4 semesters of my MFA
degree is done. And again, relief but… a big dose of “uhhhhhh….???” aka now
what. I’m familiar enough with situations like these to not have to worry too
much about the “now what”, but rather to just show up for what’s next, even if
that’s do the dishes (which, duh, I do have to do), and also, as I’ve been
doing more of lately, follow my little internal nudges, cuz they seem to have a
better idea than I do about wtf is going to happen or is meant to happen, or
which way I should row.
It’s funny. I had mini-epiphany a while back which went
something like the following: I only need to row. I don’t need to know which
way the boat is headed, I’m not steering, I’m not making the waves do their
thing – I only need to row, and I’ll get there.
But that didn’t quite
sit right with me. Sure, I agree, do the next indicated action – which for me
at the moment is to wash up and get ready for work (I’ve decided – for now – to
do my blogs in the morning – I procrastinate them at night, and then end up
past my bedtime – plus one thing I really did learn from all this paper-writing
pushing was that I really do write better in the morning. I’m a morning person
– sort of. I’ve already had one cup of coffee! – I’m more of a “mid-morning”
person – catch me at 10:30 or 11, and I’ll be ON IT… perhaps that’s also cuz
the other two cups of coffee will finally have kicked in…).
In any case, rowing is great – I can row, and sit backwards
and still question where the hell are we going. But I also do believe that it
is sort of my responsibility to have some vague idea of which ocean we’re in –
to extend the metaphor beyond its bounds! Maybe that’s still just me wanting to
have some control, some idea of control if I know where I am, where I’m
heading, and more about what I need to do to get there. Maybe that it doesn’t
sit comfortably is just all part of the action and practice of this thing – to
sit in the discomfort of not knowing, but to do the work anyway.
I don’t know what will happen at auditions. What will happen
after school. What will happen tonight, even! I want to know – especially the
“after school” part. Somehow I’m way more willing to let the audition stuff be
how it will be – I’m way more que cera cera about it. Because I really know that I can’t control the outcome, I can only
control how I show up and prepare for it – how I do or do not do research, take
action, practice, and look for an acting coach, like my acting friend suggested
to me. Somehow, letting go of the results of this is easy. Partly because, to
me, it also feels fun. It feels like an adventure. Like trying a new ice cream
every time. Like, I wonder what this flavor tastes like. So, of course it’s
easy to show up more lightly to those. (But I will say, I’m sure I wouldn’t
have always felt that way – which is why it’s taken me so long to even get here
to stage zeropointone or wherever I am.)
But, “after school,” the looming deadline of “you ought to
know.” More lies. I don’t know. I know that school has been the best thing I’ve
done for myself in a while. Not cuz I get to study and write poetry – that’s
cool, but it’s not where my passion is – but cuz I get to have this time to
discover all this new stuff about myself. I said when I arrived that I wanted
the two years of school to offer me time to “solidify my foundation within
myself.” And I think I’ve been doing that. Concretizing who I am, how I want to
be in this world – to have the time to become someone who can show up to
auditions with a sense of fun.
I am uncomfortable not knowing. I am uncomfortable feeling
like I’m not taking the “right” actions (not writing a sample syllabus, not looking at
teaching jobs, not knowing where I will live or want to live). But, I also don’t
want to teach. … So, that’s leaves me with a WIDE field, and too many options
feels a little like none at all in my fear-brain.
So, before I talk myself out of the awesomeness that is my
ability to show up and let go of the results, out of the awesomeness that is I
FINISHED my semester, I’ll go get my second cup of coffee from my microwave and
pray that all this rowing is better for me than I can possibly see. 

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