I Have Big News! — Abby Off the Record

I Have Big News!

by Abby on March 2, 2014

Listen to Your Mother show, logoSo I’m approaching a milestone birthday in a few months. Yep, the Big 4-0. And even though I witnessed it happening to friends and even my own husband, I was surprised when I myself started to feel the onset of something like a midlife crisis. The urge to shake things up, try new things, break out of my rut. Not that I’m about to sign up for pole-dancing classes or dye my hair pink. Calm down! But I HAVE done some out-of-character things recently, like signing up for my first 5K and auditioning for a live stage performance called Listen to Your Mother.

In case you don’t know this about me, I am a total introvert. I work at home by myself and sometimes go days without putting on real clothes or makeup and seeing other adults besides my husband, the mailman, and my kids’ teachers at school pick-up. For years I blogged anonymously and later it took all my nerve to put a photo of myself on my web site. I have never, ever done any public speaking except for my grad school thesis presentation in front of about 20 classmates. Even then I was a ball of stress and flop sweat.

So it’s unlikely at best for me to voluntarily sign up to read my writing aloud, first in front of just 3 people at an audition but then, if I got picked, potentially 300 people!! However, I’ve been to 2 LTYM shows in DC, and they were wonderful. For ME, seated comfortably in the dark audience. For the women on stage in the glare of the spotlight and strangers’ unwavering gazes for 90 minutes? Maybe not so much. But from the first time I saw those brave women up there sharing their heartwarming and heartbreaking stories, I thought, That will be me someday.

I’ll cut to the chase: SOMEDAY IS HERE. I’ve been selected as one of 15 cast members for Baltimore’s inaugural Listen to Your Mother show! I KNOW. The honor and thrill of that is still sinking in.

I’ve got a long road ahead of me until the night of the performance in April. I’ve got Susan Cain advice to study, rehearsals to attend, lots of new people to meet, teeth to whiten, hair to get blown out, outfits to pick out. But did I mention I’m turning 40 soon? So, what the hell. BRING IT.

Will you join me on the evening of April 26 in Baltimore to witness my public speaking debut? It’s sure to be a great show. A cast of talented, expressive, brave women sharing their stories about motherhood. Tickets are less than $12, and the director, Taya, has decided to donate a whopping 25% of proceeds to the House of Ruth, a local shelter for battered women and children. And also? First round of post-show drinks are on me. Who’s in?

LAUGH O’ THE DAY: When I rattled off the things I want to do during the next year (which also include visiting friends in Africa. Can I do a Kickstarter for that?) my husband said, “That’s quite a bucket list. You’re turning 40, not dying!” As far as he knows. Whether I drop dead of fear before I take the stage on April 26 remains to be seen.

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Kathleen Basi March 3, 2014 at 3:48 pm

Congratulations, Abby! That’s so terrific! You’ll do great. You have such humor, such sharp observations to share. And I’ve realized recently that “introvert” doesn’t mean “incapable of functioning in crowds.” Of course you’ll be nervous, and it will be both an energizing and a draining experience, but it will be terrific. I wish I could be there!

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Abby March 3, 2014 at 8:12 pm

Thanks so much for your kind and encouraging words. I think you’re right – just because something scares you doesn’t mean it’s not worth doing.

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Kate Hopper March 3, 2014 at 5:41 pm

Brava, Abby! And congratulations! I’m so happy for you! You’re going to have an amazing time. I’ll look forward to watching the recording this summer!

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Abby March 3, 2014 at 8:14 pm

Thanks, Kate! I’m sure I will. From the moment I saw my first LTYM show in D.C. A couple of years ago, I knew I wanted to be a part of it.

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Lisa Lord March 5, 2014 at 4:48 am

Congratulations! How exciting! You’re going to be great. I will be looking forward to seeing the video. Turning 40 can change your whole perspective on life, mostly in good ways (apart from the shock of realizing that the next big one is 50).

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Abby March 5, 2014 at 1:12 pm

Thanks, Lisa! I am looking forward to seeing what this new decade brings. For real. Don’t even mind a few gray hairs. :)

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Stacy B March 5, 2014 at 1:36 pm

That is very exciting. Congrats and good luck!

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Abby March 5, 2014 at 8:27 pm

Thanks, Stacy!

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Lenae March 7, 2014 at 12:17 pm

Yes: Bring it! I haven’t even thought about what to wear… I’ll add it to my list of things to panic about ;) Look forward to meeting you!

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