I've now returned from a late afternoon walk down and up the driveway ... twice. It's amazing. What would have been a venture into pitch black night a month ago, or even several weeks back, is now filled with light.
It was absolutely silent outside; no cars within miles, or so it seemed. Then I remembered. The Pack is back and every football fan in Wisconsin has by now abandoned the great outdoors for the glimmering glow of a TV set. It's the Sunday Fest of Super Bowls!
Last night's performance of Love Stories was another smashing success to an almost-full house. Audience members brought a lighter energy with them and there were many times when the theater was filled with hoots of laughter.
My nerves revealed themselves in a different manner than the Friday night performance. No dry throat (I also had a better supply of water). Instead, I found myself supported by jittery legs and a tendency to lose my place in the text I read. Prior to Act 2 I noticed a greater number of acquaintances in the audience. Though I could have felt more supported, I actually felt more scared.
Luckily, I had T'ai Chi Chih in my toolbox of relaxation techniques. Right there on stage I imagined myself rocking, then pushing nervous energy away from me while pulling calm relaxation back into my body. The mental practice worked to decelerate my frantically beating heart. It landed me back on Earth again and helped me center. Until I reached the podium, that is. There I fell back into my high alert self preservation mode. Still, I prevailed.
Today I gratefully returned to my T'ai Chi Chih practice with the knowledge that I could practice for practice-sake alone. No need to prepare myself psychologically or gear up for another night on stage. Pure relaxation. Just me and the trees. No where to go. Nothing to do. No place to be. Just here. Now. In this moment. Mmmm.