Oh it's been a hard year.
Just a year ago, while planning our wedding my husband gets laid off, I get laid off a few months later and since then, with the exception of the most wonderful three weeks of my life, it's been really hard.
My husband and I have struggled each and every day. Yes, there have been good things here and there, time with friends and calming walks with the dog, leaps in exercise and fun shows, but generally, we've been struggling.
Being out of work constantly and worrying about money every single day take a toll on you. There hasn't been one moment of total peace. Not one. And maybe there won't be for awhile, but to go through each and every day in some modicum of fear is tiring and difficult, no matter how much you love your husband, no matter how lucky you got with your new apartment, no matter how pretty the day is....the strain continues.
And honestly, not to toot my own horn, but this whole tour thing, for me, has been a gift. Not just the Trib piece, but the work, the tours, the people and of course, the validation. This whole year has been negative validation. We're not good enough to keep us at our jobs, I'm not good enough for a meager raise, we're not worth money that we're asking for.
I've been working hard at keeping this tour thing and the following Trib piece at arms length, I've been around long enough to know that a good review carries the same weight a bad review does, that one ladies opinion of me does not change the way I feel about what I'm doing, that the work isn't done just because someone likes what I'm doing...
But on the other hand, the validation of a job well done is enough to bring me to tears. To hear and know that for the first time in a long time I'm doing the right thing, that someone sees that and recoginizes it and even writes a story about it affects me so deeply that it surprises me sometimes. After that piece came out I was talking to John about it and I really did start to cry, the first tears of joy since my brother presented me with a letter from Stephen Sondheim wishing me luck on my marriage. Some of the tears were happiness from the review, some of the tears were prideful and most of them were tears of joy that I was actually crying from joy.
The struggle isn't over, not even close. John and I have a long way to go before we can enjoy a weekend free from fear, but knowing that something is working, that something is good and pure and happy doesn't remove the fear, but at least it gives the fear a much stronger companion to look up to and emulate.
Fuck you fear, I can't wait to be done with your sorry ass.