I flew out of Victoria last week with a mind teeming with thoughts of digital media, heartbreak, hope, and a thread, dropped, but still there, of childlike belief in somewhere over the rainbow.
I drove through the beautiful Okanagan, playing the new Sarah Slean, with an expanse of time to think for the first time in weeks. I thought about how it might be better to imagine that it is my own self waiting for me at the end of the rainbow, and not in fact, a soul mate, or husband, or steadfast boyfriend. Now, don’t get all pitying me or we’ll have an incident–what I’m really trying to get at here is the danger of a trusting mind. I know, all the self-help gurus will tell you, trust and you shall set yourself free. Well, they don’t trust like I do, I can promise you that.
When I was little, I either wanted to make a fort, or put on a play. One of the two. I loved to feel we were all in, totally committed to this idea, to this thing we were doing. I loved the sense that we would die building that damn fort or creating that show for the waiting living room audience of five. I found this same feeling in theatre as an adult, and often now in the work I do in digital media and even more so in my writing.
I just don’t get it when people don’t go all in with love and open up their chests to reveal all the delicious gold that is there. I like to do this as a kid would cannonball off a dock on a hot summer’s day. Maybe I’m an exhibitionist. Or maybe, worse, I trust like a performative fool in front of a really great ‘all in’ kind of Judy Garland audience. The key, I realized, while driving past empty farmland and silent snow, with nothing but the CBC to cling to, is to turn the lights on. Maybe, just maybe, the audience isn’t exactly what I thought it was, full of old pals and loving, clapping hearts.
Oh. That feeling, when the lights come on is like no other. It’s kind of like when the circus leaves, isn’t it?
No bother, the circus tent can always get packed up again. It was fun and then it wasn’t. So, this time, I’ll remember, just before you head out on the yellow brick road, pack your own self. That is all you’ll really need.