I’ve been wanting to write this for a while but I haven’t had the time to sit down to do it. And now I find myself with a few quiet moments and I have something to talk about; something I’ve observed in myself doing Priscilla here in Toronto that we can file under the “human beings are complicated” category.
It’s something I have to forgive myself for and I hope that others who had to put up with it will forgive me for. It happens to many people but it’s something no one wants to admit to. I knew that doing ensemble in a show in Toronto would be challenging but I wasn’t quite ready for it and I let it do crappy things to my psyche. It made me into the a bit of the guy I never want to be. The guy who is always subtly reminding other people or pointing out how “actually, I’m very important”. GROSS! And I feel like I became that guy. I hope not in a huge, grotesque way but I know I did, at least too much for my own taste. The human ego is so complicated and it was harder than I thought to not even have a feature role in a show in Canada. I felt like I was being judged but the only one judging me was myself.
I told myself to just breathe and not feel self-conscious but I let it get to me. I found things coming out of my mouth that came from a place of neediness and fear. Fear of not being seen, fear of not being good, fear of not being talented, fear of going backwards, fear of not being liked. Those fears can be very powerful. There were people I respect that I wanted to like me who already did. I worked so hard to make them think I was important when I didn’t need to and, I think, pushed them away, even if slightly.
It became a real exercise in humility. One that I don’t think I passed with flying colours. I mean, I hope I wasn’t obnoxious about it but there were a couple of times I heard things come out of my mouth and I remember thinking , “Why did you say that? That was self-aggrandizing. Now they think you’re a poser.” It takes so much energy trying to prove how “important” one is. It’s exhausting and a waste of time. Just show up, do your damn job, and spread good energy. That’s what I usually try to do.
I went in, wanting to just do my job and be good at it. I lost track of that sometimes. It was great lesson. One that I will take with me to New York and beyond. The great thing about NYC is there I can be anonymous and just allow that. They don’t know who I am . . . yet. But I can just enjoy that. I’m freer to surprise them and more importantly, surprise myself. It’s a bit of a second, though different, chance. I want to make it count.
I don’t like coming from a place of fear. I makes you stop breathing and believing in magic. Fear can suck it. I won’t be that guy anymore.