in which things get kinda personal

So much has happened since I last posted, I don’t even know where to start.  I had lots of time on my hands to write on Friday, but I was a bit of a grouch, so I opted against posting.  This was a good idea, as I’ve been in a much lighter mood since 🙂

One of the things that was getting me down last week was the fact that I was not feeling well physically.  I had stomach surgery last month, and while the days I feel unwell are getting fewer and farther between, I’ve had a few of them in a row recently, which is really frustrating.  One of those days also happened to be the day I was supposed to sing in masterclass for Nina, but there was no way I was going to give up that opportunity.  After napping for a few hours, I at least felt well enough to sing, and really enjoyed the masterclass experience.  I felt like my performance obviously would have been better if I’d been feeling 100%, but such is life.  I received lots of positive feedback from my colleagues, so I think we all have to remember that at this point in our careers, even the not-so-great performances are still pretty darn good.

The other thing that was getting me down was my living situation, which is unfortunately not going to be changing.  The residences at St. Mary’s took a little while to get back to me, and when they did, they said it would be a few days before I could move in, but that I would still have to pay a full month’s rent.  I can’t afford to pay my first week’s rent twice, so I’m staying in a sublet where I live in total squalor and look after the cat.  Note to future HSOW participants: stay in one of the university residences.  While some of my colleagues have been very fortunate in their sublet situations, living in res takes away the chance that you could be in my situation!  Oh well.  It’s only three more weeks, and I’m trying to spend my time elsewhere, in other wonderful places with other wonderful people!

Speaking of wonderful places and wonderful people… on to the more wonderful things I’ve been up to!  On Sunday, a group of 15-20 of us went to Crystal Crescent beach.  Unlike the Point Pleasant beach which I visited last weekend, this was a real beach, not a little strip of dirt filled with rocks, seaweed, and creepy crawlies.  The beach was beautiful, and it was such a fantastic way to spend the day.  Andrew drove Meghan and I in his truck, and we sang at the top of our lungs to music from Meghan’s iPod while enjoying sunshine and breathtaking scenery.  Meghan kept grinning and sighing and saying how much she loves life.  And you know what? I responded saying I felt the same way.

Here’s where things get kinda personal.  2012 has been really, really difficult for me.  It wasn’t that long ago that I would spend whole days in bed thinking, “how the hell am I going to function in an opera workshop?”  Needless to say, it had been a long time since I’d said that I love life.  Needless to say, though, I’m here, and I’m functioning.  And loving life.  I’m happy to say that many things changed in the weeks leading up to HSOW, and just like Meghan, I must have said a million times on Sunday how much I love it here.  While working in the “real world” will always come with it’s share of adversity, the safe space that HSOW creates here is a fantastic way to prepare us.

And this safe space definitely extends beyond rehearsals.  For the past few years, I’ve had mixed feelings about going to the beach.  The sand, the sun, the water… but… I have to put my bathing suit on? and be seen by other people? and I have to see them in their bathing suits too?  Nonetheless, I really enjoyed the beach on Saturday.  Jeremy posted the other day about the collective release of embarrassment he felt during the acting classes we participated in, and I definitely felt this on the beach.  I hope I don’t embarrass anyone else by saying so, but there were so many different bodies at the beach, both inside and outside of our group, and nobody batted an eye.  Scars, tan lines, moles, the places we wish a few pounds would appear or disappear – I’m hypersensitive about these things, but with this group of people, I suddenly felt I didn’t have to be.

I love life.

…I apologize that this post had little to do with the Workshop itself, but as we all know too well, our well-being as performers is all about our well-being as humans, right?


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