Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Living so far away ...

I'm sitting at the Jet Blue terminal having breakfast. I can't believe what a luxury this is. I gave myself plenty of time to get here and catch my flight back to San Diego - and it took less than half an hour to get here (last time I made this trip, it took an hour and a half). So, I have two hours to kill. First I went to Borders (so sad they are going out of business) then I came here to the sit down restaurant and got myself a proper breakfast. I can't remember the last time I actually sat down to eat a real meal at an airport. I'm always turned off by the high prices.. but, today I was given the luxury of more time, and therefore, I'm taking the luxury of a lovely breakfast and some time to type here.

As I was sitting eating my food and sipping my coffee... my back twinged a bit and memories of the beginning of the week came flooding back. The beginning of a painful week.

A week ago Saturday I was helping Izz out of her car seat and I felt a sharp pain in my lower back. It hurt a bit, but then calmed down for a while. By the evening though, it was starting to get worse and worse - no combination of stretching, yoga, tylenol helped it. By the next day I could barely walk. We had a planned a lazy day at home with some house cleaning thrown in (oh goodness, we needed it), and I couldn't pick up anything or even move much at all (even sitting hurt). I took enough pain medication to make it to the dress rehearsal or our current show - but, didn't make it through the first act. I was in so much pain, that Linda and Gabe had to get my car and walk me to it. They offered to drive me home - but, I waved them off. As I neared our house, I realized that I would need to call Daniel to come get me and help me out of the car.. I was in that much pain.

I made it inside the house and just lay down on the floor. We called the nurse hotline in an effort for them to schedule me an appointment with my doctor first thing the next morning. Instead they told me to go to the emergency room.... and that's when I realized -- We Can't!

I never really considered going... I was in pain - but, the idea of sitting in an emergency room for hours when I could barely move off the ground seemed like too much pain to exert on me just then. But, we also couldn't go because Daniel would have to take me, and Izz was upstairs sleeping. Which meant that we would have to wake her and then drag her with us to the emergency room where she would be up and cranky for hours on end. The other possibility was calling a friend - but, who do you know well enough in a town where you are just making friends to come and sit with your kid at 1am??

I really missed having family close by right then. When you are incapacitated and you just need your Mom (or your husband could really use his Mom), it really hits you smack in the face how far away you are from family.

When Laura (sister in law) needs family close by -- they drive over from Brooklyn. Her parents help babysit and can be there in an emergency. When my brother needs to drop of the kids, he can with my parents. And not only the actual physical help that family close by lends you, but the emotional reassurance that they are close by IF you were to need them.

In NYC I had lived there long enough to form relationships with friends that were like family bonds. When I was running a 104 fever in the middle of the night - my friend Courtney came down from Harlem (I was living in Hells Kitchen) to accompany me to the emergency room. When we got there, she was my advocate, since I was so sick, I wasn't making my sense. That's Family!

So, as I sit here heading "home" to San Diego, I can't help but wonder how much of a "home" it is when you feel you don't really have a safety net of family there to support you if you really need it.

I think if we are going to call San Diego our base for the next few years -- some work needs to be put into cultivating some friends that we can really count on.. friends that can also count on us. Because in the end, home isn't really home unless you feel totally comfortable there.

P.S. Back is much better. PT helped quite a bit.. and even though it still hurts -- I can move. hallelujah!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Tech is not conducive for parenting

My job involves Tech... otherwise known as technical rehearsals. This is when all the elements of the show come together; lights, costumes, sound, the sets, the musicians and the actors on stage.

Tech usually starts at noon and ends between 10pm and midnight - depending on the span of that days rehearsal.

I really need to be here for some of the time, to make sure everything is going ok. Most of the time, I need to stick around until the note session at the end of the night.

In my professional life, I've always loved tech. It thrills me to see everything coming together. It's a stressful time, but, also kind of magical.

The problem now is that a) I'm a parent now, with a daughter that wakes up around 7am. b) I'm not part of the creative teams here...

So -- I miss my daugther, and in the morning when she wakes up (and me) .. i'm a little groggy and not the greatest person to play games or really enjoy her. Also, because I'm not on the creative team.. I really miss directing while I'm here. I feel like something has been cut away from me and I just have an empty space. I love producing.. usually.. but, during tech, I miss that excitement you get when you see what you've worked on so hard and have always had in your head up on stage.

I wish I could do both - or to be more blunt, all three: be an involved parent, a director and a producer. But, how do you juggle all three? Even if I could direct, I'm not sure I could really do all three -- I don't think there are enough hours. It's that balance thing again... I feel like it's not actually achievable.

Man -- this is really making me not like tech at all.