Monday, September 28, 2009

Never Go BackTo Before

If memory serves me correctly, it was in the spring of 1998. I had just received a call from my son who was auditioning for three musical theatre touring productions in Kansas City. The audition had gone well. Now the waiting.

How far do we go to capture a dream? Do we set limits on who we are, what we expect or maybe where our decisions will take us? I was proud of his courage. He had driven alone from Chicago to Nashville to his present location to face the toughest casting directors in the country with nothing more than his '87 Honda, his voice, his calling card and his dream.

I had moved from Ohio to Wisconsin then lastly to Oregon for a reconciliation that didn't take. I was raised to be pratical and responsible. Now I was 2500 miles from family on my own with two small children. I didn't know I could follow dreams. I'd forgotten I had them.

In the musical "Ragtime", Mamma sings a song, You Can Never Go Back To Before, about her life changing when she steps out of the role of society woman to raise an orphaned, black child. She lives what she believes in, a journey across generations, a journey into unchartered territory. 'Before' no longer exists.

Courage comes in all forms. That day my son found his in a long drive alone to sing three songs for strangers who held his future in their hands.

He did not get any of the shows, but his determination and resolve finally lead him to his theatre career. I found my dream in words and writing in my quest to find myself and my way alone in Oregon.

I never went back to before. Neither did my son. And, with all that is in me, I will encourage my grandchildren to follow their dreams.

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