Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Time Out

posted by Sara Hennessy at 2:25 PM
Our beautiful son not only made his entrance into the world after the opening of The Fair Maid of the West, parts I & II, but he decided not to show up almost until our initial scheduled closing date. He decided to make a dramatic entrance (in true theatre fashion) after 23 hours of labor via c-section almost 2 weeks after he was due. He was born having acted (by proxy) in three productions: The Shape of Things, The God Botherers and a Pasadena Playhouse Staged Reading of Another Part of the Forrest.

For the last 7 months, I’ve been a mom. It’s been a challenge keeping up with the theatre, my son and (sadly) the day job. Before he was born, the theatre was the child I’d go home to at night, but now I go home to a human child and the theatre has turned into the often-neglected stepchild because there just aren’t enough hours in the day.

The goal is that we do it all: have the family, the theatre and pursue our artistic careers. I think that would be easier if we had figured out a way to make a living from our artistic careers prior to starting our family. We would be no different from many working families in the world, a babysitter helping out for several hours a day while at the theatre. But now, for both my husband and I to be actively involved in the rehearsal process, we would have to have a babysitter for 14+ hours a day – not a compromise I’m willing to make.

And so where does that leave me? I’m in time out. It’s as if I’m watching everyone else play from my time-out rug in the corner. This is not a punishment because I’m there with my son who lights up my world. It’s just different because this, play number 11, is the first play I won’t have had an artistic role in, which is weird. I’m not buying props, altering costumes, acting or assisting the director (except by putting his son to bed every night).

It doesn’t mean I’m not working. My list of things to do today includes: putting together proposals and setting up some group nights; deciding on and ordering stock for our Furious Insider Membership cards; proofing website updates and email blasts; delivering a letter to the Box Office that would be included in subscriber orders; and running to Target to buy bottle liners & formula. But I definitely feel a bit disjointed and like I’m not doing quite enough. Everyone else is working so hard day and night, and I’m barely keeping up with my administrative role as the Director of Audience Development. I’m incredibly proud of each person in our ensemble, cast and crew. They’re working so hard to ensure we have a successful run and a great season ahead. Thank you for picking up my slack.

So what’s next for me? My goal is to be on stage again before my son’s 1st birthday. It won’t be easy, but we’re hoping we can make it work.

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