This has been a night of new experiences.
I watched my son leave for his first formal dance this evening--limo, corsage for the girlfriend, the whole works. He looked lounge-a-rific in his burgundy velvet jacket, his baby blue ruffled tuxedo shirt, his blue skate shoes. My dapper boy. I brought him to his friend's house, where the five limo-sharing couples, looking both stunningly grown up and touchingly young in their fancy clothes, congregated. All the mothers took copious amounts of photos (except for me--sadly, we never found our lost camera, but other moms have promised to send me copies of the pictures; I'll post one later if it's okay with Arin.) One of the moms secretly gave all of the boys boxes of Sweetheart candies; at a designated time, they all pulled the boxes out of their jacket pockets and said, in unison, "Will you be my sweetheart?" to their dates. A lot of blushing transpired. Very sweet. The limo should be heading back now. I can't wait to hear about their night.
After I dropped Arin off, I took Hannah to an audition for a community production of Annie Get Your Gun. One of the directors came up to me and said "Why don't you audition, too, as long as you're here?" I had no plan or desire to participate--I have never officially acted before, and am not much of a singer; I had just intended to sit on the sidelines and watch Hannah do her thing--but then she latched onto the idea, and convinced me to go for it. I figured the worst thing that could happen was I'd make a total fool of myself. How bad is that, really, in the big scheme of things? Plus, I like taking creative risks, going outside my creative comfort zone. I decided to push through my initial resistance, have fun with the audition and chalk it up to new experience.
The whole thing ended up being a blast. I was relieved when the director started off by teaching us some choreography. Even though I haven't been in a dance studio for a few years, my body felt right at home doing jazz squares and counting off "5-6-7-8." Later, I was asked to read some of Annie's lines in a Texas accent, and sing both "Happy Birthday" and a bunch of scales in front of a room full of people--this felt a lot less familiar than the dancing, but not as scary as I imagined it might be. It was actually kind of exhilarating. And it was very cool to share the experience with Hannah (who rocked, by the way). At first I thought that if I miraculously happened to get cast in the show, I would automatically decline--I have so much on my plate as it is--but then I started thinking about how much fun it would be to be in a show with Hannah, to learn choreography together and get to know myself as a performer. Already I could feel myself stretch tonight--I found more power in my voice than I realized I had, and I had to tap into some usually ignored stubbornness to read Annie's lines with gumption. I am used to slipping into other skins in my fiction, but to do it (or at least attempt to do it) with my body and voice was a new sensation. A whole different kind of transformation. I have no idea what I'll say if I do get offered a part (as unlikely as that may be.) I'll keep you posted...