Episode 1177: Acting UpAdria stood in the wings, her youngest child asleep in her arms. She mouthed the dialogue of the old romantic melodrama she’d updated with more natural speech, more independent women and opening up the casting to whoever best auditioned for the roles.
Adria could not have been prouder of how it all came together, the vibrant set designs, the detailed costumes, and the absorbing performances.
To say she was exhausted would be an understatement but it was the kind of exhausted that felt really, really good.
Adria adjusted her hold on her son, careful not to jostle Russell awake in the process, though blessedly he was good at sleeping through just about everything. When awake, Russell was as bubbly as could be, a whir of fun and minor disasters, but this production simply would not have been possible without support, especially her husband ably carrying his share of the load, not to mention a child who enjoyed his sleep and quiet cuddles almost as much as playtime.
Adria knew how lucky she was, how harried her life felt at times felt, she was blessed compared to so many other moms whose schedules were nowhere near as flexible and didn’t have backup to bail them out on occasion.
She had the best of both worlds, she managed to juggle being present in her kids’ lives while at the same time pursuing a creative career. Adria tried hard to be grateful for having so much but sometimes you just could not shake shake your genes.
She’d grown up in a household where nothing was ever enough, there was always another step up the ladder, more money to be made, more ways to be better, be the best. That was her only explanation for this, the bits of her mom and dad inside her that refused to feel satisfied with the abundance she had.
This production had received glowing reviews. Her kids were happy and healthy, one in her arms, the other in the audience enjoying the show with Ryley. She’d found a best friend in the theater’s chief financial officer. She’d found balance in her mind and heart that she could live with. And still. And still she looked out from those wings, and a frown darkened everything.
The play was earning enough at the box office to pay everyone they needed to pay, to put lofty plans in motion for the next production and come way with a profit, yet because of who she came from, that wasn’t enough for her. The theater was almost sold out. But not entirely sold out. Every empty seat grated on Adria, each felt like a failure, felt like a challenge to do more, do better, risk the delicate balance she’d established in her personal and professional life.