Friday, September 16, 2011

Coming Back

I'm sitting in the basement, currently the warmest room in the house as I have refused to turn on the heat just yet, watching Grace and Ben play with the kitchen set.  It is after lunch and we are all still in our pajamas.  It's just one of those days.  And oh, how I love those days.  After this past week a lazy day is just what I need.

The weather has gone from sweltering summer to cool, brisk fall overnight.  On Monday the boys went off to school in shorts and tee shirts and this morning it was pants, long sleeved shirts, and jackets. 

Our schedule has changed just as dramatically as the weather has.  Exactly what I was dreading when school started.  Our slow, laid back days have given way to drop-offs, pick-ups, football practice and football games, swimming lessons for all four kids all at different times, boy scout meetings, soccer practice, doctor's appointments, and homework.  This week has been especially rough when it seems all of these activities have started at the same time.  I feel as though we were really thrown into the firestorm and I'm left feeling a bit depleted at the moment.

So, yes, we are all huddled in the basement, midday, still in our jammies.  But the kids are fed, so I get points for that, right?

I console myself with the thought that our schedule will slow down a bit when the sports activities are done in a month.  At least that is what I told myself on Monday when I decided to take on yet another endeavor.  This one for myself.

At one point in my life singing and acting and dancing took center stage.  Literally.  Auditioning for a role for a musical or play was just something I was so used to and it was not uncommon for me to be on stage in 3 or 4 shows a year.  Singing alone on stage in front of a few thousand people was my norm.  I would also sing for 5 or 6 weddings a year and was also always part of one choir or another.

For the past twelve years I have had zero contact with the girl that loved the stage.  I have not been part of a choir.  I have not been on stage.  I haven't sung for one wedding.  I'm not exactly sure how it happened, but somehow, that girl disappeared.

On Monday I went to my first audition in thirteen years.  I was sweating just filling out the audition sheet.  I rolled my eyes as I listed my "experience" and recalled that it was all at least 15 years ago.  Pathetic. 

The Symphony Chorus director sat back and listened with her eyes closed as I sang my song a cappella and  with as much feeling as my shaky breath would allow.  She smiled, told me that my song was one of her all-time favorites, and had me do my scales.  I was pleasantly surprised with my range and the fact that the break I had in my voice when I was younger had now disappeared.

"You're just a little out of shape, aren't you?"  the director chuckled.

"Uh, yes.  I haven't really auditioned for anything in well over a decade so even more than out of shape I'M SO NERVOUS!"  I confided.   The director rolled her eyes and told me she wanted to punch me, whether from the admission of my nerves or the fact that I hadn't been singing in so long I don't know.

"You're nervous?  I'm nervous! I don't want to go after you!"  the next auditionee said loud enough for everyone to hear.     

The director handed me my rehearsal schedule and told me she would see me in a couple of weeks.  And just like that I was back.  I suppose I had never really disappeared.  I was just "on hold" for a little while.

I got home and told Todd and the kids that I was now a part of the Symphony Chorus (the same one I was in 15 years ago) and they all clapped for me, hugged me, and congratulated me. 

Later, as I started to put my rehearsal dates in my calendar I wondered if I had made the right decision in auditioning.  Could our already busy schedule handle one more obligation?  Todd quickly put that thought out of my mind and told me how proud of me he was and that he thinks I am such a great example for our kids.  I don't know about that, but I am looking forward to getting some of "me" back again. 

I don't plan on working my way up to 4 or 5 shows a year again.  But maybe someday I could be in another musical.  Todd has never seen me on stage like that before and I always kind of regretted that.  Plus, it would be neat for my kids to see that their mom is good at something other than making dinner and cleaning toilets.  Maybe someday. 

For now, I'm just happy to have this day to sit in my pajamas with my kiddos in our warm basement.


Brittany said...

Congrats! That is so exciting! :) What a fantastic post, and experience! Good luck to you!

DysFUNctional Mom said...

Kat!! I am SO excited for you! That's wonderful. I hope it goes well and you enjoy it. And do NOT feel guilty!!

Elaine A. said...

Oh I love this SO MUCH! I just joined the choir at our church (best I can do here, at this point) after a 2 year hiatus. I've also sung for pay and in musicals.

You know, we could SO be sisters, right??? ;)

Anyway, SO HAPPY for you and glad that you are back to singing and happy for you to get that much needed "ME" time!!! YAY!!!

Tonya said...

That is awesome Kat! And our basement is the warmest room in the house too. Why is that?! Crazy...

Kelly said...

Oh, how exciting!! This will be so good for you, even if it makes your schedule a litle more hectic, having something like this that you love. Your kids will think you are so cool when they see you singing with the chorus.

I understand the crazy schedules. I feel so overwhelmed these days. They aren't in any more activities that usual, it's just as they get older, the activities are more involved and more of a time committment. A couple of nights a week Todd and I even have to split up to get everyone everwhere they need to be.

Jayne said...

Good for you! It feels good to get back to your niche after being away for a while. have a good time!

Beth (A Mom's Life) said...

That's awesome! I, too, am trying to find some of the old me.

Robyn said...

YAY, Congrats! Way to go after something you love.

Jessa said...

Go you! I attempted to join a community choir a few years ago. Got in as a 2nd soprano and moved. Ugh. Enjoy every second!

Kelly said...

that is wonderful! I am super proud of you for stepping outside the box and doing the thing that you love.

Riahli said...

Oh Kat this made me cry just because it's so wonderful and beautiful... You are amazing! This probably sounds weird to say but I'm so proud of you and excited for you! I really need to figure out a way to get a little bit of me back as well... not sure what that would include... but I bet it feels good. :)

Brenda L. Greenwald said...

SUPER proud of you for jumping back in, Kat! Talk about some tangible self-care AND the gift of music alone will be well worth the the juggling of calendars. You're teaching your kiddos all about how Moms and Dads have pieces of themselves they need to nurture, too! Can't wait to hear about the repertoire!

Mom24 said...

That is so awesome! Congratulations Kat. I think you're terrific. :)

Rima said...

That is so awesome, Kat! I am so happy for you! And very impressed with your singing abilities. I think it's absolutely wonderful that you're doing this for yourself. And it IS a gift to your children, for them to be able to see you doing something like that. Don't regret it for a minute!

Jeni said...

Actually, I think you will find it quite amazing how many things you CAN juggle and balance in your life -provided you believe they are all well worth the effort! But, start to discontinue some of those things you enjoy because you feel you don't have time for them, strangely enough, you rarely pick up any extra, much needed time after doing that! Today, I do very little other than cook supper most days, wash dishes, tidy up occasionally, go to one church group meeting a month, plus trying to attend church with some regularity and also, I embroider! And I have no time leftover or so it seems. And yet, not too many years back, I worked a full-time job of 40 hours a week, worked a part-time job that often consumed 20-25 hours, managed my housework way better and a lot more of it too, fed three kids and myself, occasionally read some books, did some sewing for my kids and myself, went places to visit family and friends a far piece from home, took care of all the outside lawn work myself then too -or most of that, most of the time! And, I actually even could have squeezed a few other activities in there every now and again! But since I've become a retired Grandma, with all that time to spare those 60 plus hours a week I used to spend working for a living, ya know, I don't have near as much time to do the pleasurable things these days, other than the embroidery, that is! It is what we make of it -that time thing -and if the music and being on stage, singing, dancing, acting -whatever -is something that you really missed, that you really do love and enjoy, you'll find your way clear to getting a good balancing act in place for yourself and your family! I have complete confidence in your ability to pull that off!

Mona said...

Its a wonder how you manage! Phew!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations! I love how all of those other 'selves' of ours just sit and wait patiently for the right time to come back out!

Tracey - Just Another Mommy Blog said...

I am so jealous I kinda want to vomit.

I am happy for you, though. Wish I could be onstage alongside you...

Tracey - Just Another Mommy Blog said...

I am so jealous I kinda want to vomit.

I am happy for you, though. Wish I could be onstage alongside you...

Krystyn said...

Kat this is soooo stinking awesome. I'm so happy for you. For doing something your love and finding something you get joy our of...for yourself!

dianna said...

Yeah...GO KAT! You are awesome!!!
SO proud of you : )

Lisa said...

yay you! I would love to hear you sing too! It's hard, how we put "ourselves" on a shelf to be everything that our family needs. yay for finding a little snip-it of time just for you! Hope it's as recharging as you need it to be!!!

Words To Live By

Be grateful for each new day.
A new day that you have never lived before.
Twenty-four new, fresh, unexplored hours to use usefully and profitably.
We can squander, neglect, or use them.
Life will be richer or poorer by the way we use today.
Finish every day and be done with it.
You have done what you could;
some blunders and absurdities crept in;
forget them as soon as you can.
Tomorrow is a new day.
You shall begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be
encumbered with your old nonsense.

-Ralph Waldo Emerson