Something new and challenging for me
I would characterize myself as a pretty even keel guy over all. I like the rush of taking risks and have always been a little bit dare-devilish, but at the same time, I also like the security of the familiar and knowing that I’m ‘safe’. Well, last night, I definitely stretched my limits. Here’s the story. Several months ago a friend of mine approached me about being in a play with a local drama group. Mind you, this would be in Irish. At the time, I thought, “sure! Why not. It would be a challenge, probably help me learn, and it could be fun!” So I went for it. I didn’t end up getting the part, but I was told the only reason why was that I couldn’t really pull off the 60 year old man the part was written to be for. (Silent moment of thanks that I’m not quite at that stage yet!!) So, I honestly was a little bit disappointed, but also relieved. The thought of standing on a stage acting through a foreign language was a pretty daunting thing for me to think of. I know, I know…I’m learning the language and I know I err towards being more down on my abilities than I should, but I also know my limitations and my lack of understanding too. So, fast forward to a few weeks ago. Since our friends were involved in the production, we definitely wanted to see the play. It’s a really good play and quite well performed – the group really does an outstanding job. After seeing the part that I tried out for performed, I probably could have pulled it off, but I’m glad I didn’t! ha! It was a good story, and lots of fun to see. Well, this last Monday afternoon, I get a call from my friend and she explains that they need help. It turns out one of the people in the play couldn’t be there for the Wednesday night performance they were going to have. (For you mathematically challenged, that’s 2 days away…yep) She wants me to take a small part and cover for the guy, who happens to be the crowd favorite since he’s one of the local priests. Thankfully I’d seen the play and knew just how small of a part this actually was. So, I agreed to it, hung up the phone, and panicked. WHAT did I just commit to? I started rehearsing my lines straight away and began to get fairly comfortable with them. Thankfully, my part truly was easy. I had the part of a lawyer coming to read a dying woman’s last will and testament while she was with her friends on her death bed. So yeah, I was lucky enough to be able to have 80% of what I had to do on a piece of paper…that helped my nerves a little. So, after practicing my lines (mainly so I was actually saying the Irish correctly) I show up last night for my big moment. I was able to get 1 rehearsal before it was show time. Yes…1 rehearsal. I was getting more and more nervous as the day went on, and as the play started, I was going crazy. I knew I’d be fine, and I’d done plenty of plays in my time, but rarely in a foreign language…and never a foreign language where I was the foreigner! I waited and waited and waited until it was my time. And. I. Nailed it. ha ha! I actually spoke it clearer than I had any time I went through it, and was actually understandable. It was fun during the moment, more so than I thought it would be. And when I came off the stage, the director and my friend were there giving me my own little standing ovation. Made me feel so good, and really like I had just accomplished a major task. It got me thinking a lot about risk and chances I actually don’t take and wonder why. Sometimes, some things aren’t worth trying or doing, but other times, some risks are totally worth the nervousness/pain/trouble. Last night was certainly worth it. I was stretched, doing something I wouldn’t have really imagined myself doing, and I had a blast. There’s no video, and only one self pic I took with my phone back stage while I was waiting to show how nervous I was, but I do have witnesses that can testify that I did it! I’m glad I took the risk.