Thursday, February 25, 2010

Just When I Really Start Kicking Ass And Taking Names

The party's almost over. Our performance for the Altrusia Club (A civic-minded club for ladies who do good work and drink wine) went just way too well tonight. Finally and at last I think everyone (and when I say everyone, I mean me, of course) has finally settled into their characters, knows all their lines and is just having a big ol' party onstage.
We had at least as much fun as the audience and they did not stop laughing. I could tell we had a few repeaters because every time one of our big-laugh scenes came up, I could hear the twittering from the seats.
Oh. It was just a joy.
My character, Victoria Ambrose, has finally broken out of her shell. Either I have found her or she has found me. I am not sure how this process works. It's a little like magic, I think. And because I don't really know one damn thing about acting beyond what I've learned from watching The Actor's Studio, which isn't much, it is magic for me.
I do project well. I do. I admit that. I think I learned how to do that when I was a cheerleader in the 9th grade. Seriously. I can get that voice out of my chest and out there. I watched a little bit of some of the video that was made tonight and I was, quite frankly, amazed at how well my voice projects.
Which only boils down to the fact that I'm loud.

You know, a little over a year ago, I almost lost my voice. It was when I was going crazy and I couldn't talk loud enough to be heard. I KNEW it was psychosomatic. I'd done it once before. There was nothing at all wrong with me, physically, but I could not, could not speak out.
I. Lost. My. Voice.

But it came back. I remember auditioning for that play we did last year. The one I played five different characters in. I'd told Jack that I'd lost my voice but that it was coming back and they wanted me to play these roles but Jack had to ask me- "How's your voice?"
And I said, "It's getting better every day."
And it did. And by the time we performed the play, I was fine.
The Opera House and the people in it who believed in me, gave it back to me- that voice of mine.

Jack and Jan directed that play and it was a joy to be in. It was hard work, but it was joyful work. And this in this play, I get to act with Jan and Jack and that, too, has been a joy.

I hate to see it end. And I'm not auditioning for the next one. I need to spend time at home. I have this baby boy with the cutie patootie butt to take care of sometimes. And I have his grandfather who has been so generous of spirit to let me go off to rehearsals and performances and who has done that so graciously and lovingly but I need to spend more time with him. And spring is coming and there's the garden and the chickens are being so prolific in their laying and well, I just need to concentrate for awhile on things here at home.

But Lord, I am going to miss this playing stuff. I am not going to put it down and walk away from it entirely because it's so good for me. I know it is.

I am not a club joiner. I am not a do-gooder, although I do pick up trash on my walks.

I am at heart a solitary woman. But when I walk into that Opera House, I am happy. I see the people I am creating this...thing...with and I am happy. I owe them so much.

Well, it's getting late. I am going to go wash the make-up off my face and get in the bed and read a bit more of Terms Of Endearment. And then I get to put my make-up on again for two more nights, go out there and be another woman. Get to hear the laughter from the audience, get to do something I love so much that I watch the show through the tiny peep-hole I have backstage. Get to walk onstage and open my mouth and project my voice which is loud and which is strong.

My lack-of-a-voice was a indicator of my insanity. My regaining of it was an indicator of being returned to some sort of health. I am so glad to have that voice back. I use it to tell my husband how much I love him. I use it to laugh with my children. I use it to sing to Owen. Every time he comes over I come up with a new song to sing to him. Some days it's a little blues riff. Some days it sounds like something a kindergarten class would sing. Some days it's a bit like opera. And he listens to me with those huge, barely-blinking eyes and he smiles.

Listen- you younger mamas and remember- whatever it is that makes you happy, that gives you voice, is good for your babies, for your family. If I have anything to pass on, it would be that. To remember yourself. To remember that YOUR voice is absolutely and undeniably important.

Use your voice. Don't let it be dampened or darkened or silenced. Sing whatever song that floats into your heart and demands your voice to make it heard. Go onstage and become another character. Whisper your dreams to the full moon and into your lover's neck as you hold your lover to you. Call to your chickens, your children, your dogs. Yell out your frustrations, scream out your pain, croon out your love.

Your voice. My voice. Let's use 'em while we have 'em.

The play will be over soon enough.


  1. My mother never found her voice, but I'm finding my voice more and more every day. And part of that is thanks to you, Ms Moon.

  2. you look FANFUCKINTASTIC!!!! what a beautiful flame of a woman you are.

  3. i am not a club joiner either. i know it, exactly.

  4. WOW!!! Ms. Moon, you are a stunningly good-looking woman!!! You look glamorous, and that you know it, but don't care.

  5. Stunning. Thank you for your wisdom and your beauty and sharing it all with complete strangers.

    You are so right. I love how my mom did what made her happy, showed her strength and talents and sang sweet nothings in my ear.

  6. interesting- once when i was a freelance consultant (back in a past life before I became vague and lost all my vocabulary) I had to go to my first difficult community meeting and speak in front of hostile agents, I totally lost my voice the night before, sitting in my motel room in a small country town, having flown 4 hours in a small plane to get there. I had to cancel. I literally couldn't speak.

    It was nothing but FEAR. Amazing the power of the mind....

  7. This is the third time I try to leave this comment, which is probably the universe telling me to butt out and not stick my nose where it doesn't belong, but here goes anyway:

    After all that you say in that post, are you sure it's wise not to go out and use your voice, your beautiful voice? How much time and effort can it take, really, and how much energy will you get in return?

    I'm off to mind my own business now...

  8. Thank you for your wisdom. Beautifully said.

    And I think it's possible to be both? The solitary soul, and centre stage? You don't have to reject one to be the other.

  9. You pierce me right through.
    And your beauty is breathtaking.

  10. I know Ms. Moon will understand if I take advantage of her space for a minute to say THANK YOU to all the wonderful members of her blog family for their support. We felt you all with us last night and we did have a ball. And tonight we'll get crazy again! Love from Jan and Jack

  11. My goodness, you have a perfect nose, Ms Moon! And, I know surgery didn't do that.


  12. I agree with nicol, I love your nose. But that's not what I was going to say originally.
    I'm so glad you found the Opera House, because it has given you, and in return, our whole family, more of a voice than before, which makes us so happy!
    But really, you have always had a strong voice, and I know this for many reasons. One being your past teacher, and now my teacher, Ms. Nana has told me how much you were your own person, which has passed on to me, because she'll tell me so. I love it when she says I'm like you. Makes me proud.
    Can't wait to see the play again tonight!

  13. I'll see you tomorrow for the play!

  14. Michelle- I went to sleep last night after just having read those words and I swear, if that is true, I have done my job. Love you so.

    Maggie May- Well, taking one's own picture makes it easy to look not so bad. Ha! If you could see my neck. Oh, if you could see my neck. And I have a policy- I don't join anything with the word "club" in it.

    Angie M- I still had on my make-up so there you go. I don't normally look anything like that.

    Elizabeth- No. YOU are wonderful.

    Geeks In Rome- That makes me happy.

    Screamish- Oh it is so true. And scary.

    Mwa- I know. I have thought about this but I think it's time to take a break. It is very stressful for me, you know, the learning of lines, the getting to the Opera House three or more times a week. I will go back. You know I will. Thank-you for posting your comment, despite the difficulty and I am sorry you had trouble with it. I don't know what's going on. I have trouble posting comments on Typepad. It is frustrating.

    Jo- I know. I'll do both. I promise.

    Deb- Honey. Thank-you.

    Jan- And as always, some of us will be more crazy than others. Let's just oh, call him Budly.

    Nicol- Yeah. From that angle. My nose is so not perfect you can't even believe it. I have always despaired of my nose.
    But no, no surgery. If I ever break my nose though, I am going to use it as an excuse to get this one fixed up a bit. Noses are weird, aren't they?

    HoneyLuna- As you know, I adore and admire and respect Miss Nana so much so that makes me feel wonderful and honey- you are so much stronger and more open to the universe at your age than I was when I was at nursing school and a decade older. It makes ME proud of you AND of me to be compared to you. Know what I mean? I love you, baby girl.

  15. DTG- I can't wait to hear your laughter from the audience.

  16. you're so purty.
    i love your voice.
    i loved your writing about the play and how it feels.
    i felt goosebumps at your last paragraph. yes, let's use our voices.
    i feel like i go much too long without saying anything.
    i will remember to sing out loud this weekend, and coo to the animals.
    i bet it will help heaps.
    and you keep singing strong and clear, you hear?
    congrats on the play, it just sounds so amazing and fun.

  17. I started crying just reading the word Terms of Endearment.

  18. Bethany- As always, thank-you, my love.

    Erin- I know. Powerful movie, powerful book.

  19. Thank you, my dear. When I feel guilty about expressing my voice through writing or friendship or yoga, I will remember your words. My boys need to see that my voice matters, too.

    Your voice certainly shines for many.

  20. Re. 'Use your voice. Don't let it be dampened or darkened or silenced. Sing whatever song that floats into your heart and demands your voice to make it heard. Go onstage and become another character' - having spent the last week getting lost in the Adelaide Festival and associated Fringe Festival, seeing such great acts New York's The Wau Wau Girls and Australia's own The Burlesque Hour I can only agree that using your own voice, the one we've all been given, is probably our only objective in the few decades or so we get to live and love on this planet. So thanks, Ms Moon, for making that extra clear!


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