Sunday, March 1, 2009

Grease and the Continuing Saga of Anger Management

We went to see the play Grease at the Lebanon Opera House yesterday, and what a great show it was. It was put on by the North Country Community Theater and drew from the local high schools in the area. We took the kids to see it because they love the music and thought they'd enjoy the show, which they did, but more on that later.

What impressed us the most about the show was the level of talent that these kids displayed. They are sophomores, juniors and seniors in high school, and they sang and acted beautifully. I've always thought it took a special talent and wherewithal to dedicate yourself to theater at that age, because not only are you putting yourself out there for scrutiny, but at least when I was in high school, it took guts to be in drama, because it wasn't necessarily cool, especially for a guy. This also points to the fact that you're willing to overcome that barrier because your love of performing, and that's what ultimately inspires and motivates you. Very admirable, in my eyes.

And then there's the talent. These kids sang beautifully, they did a great job, all the while knowing that their friends and family were in the audience watching. I've never been good at dealing with that, and as I've mentioned, respect and admire people who can. It's interesting to consider who will continue with the drama and take it to the next level.

We were thinking that our kids might show some inclination to be in theater. It's just such a nice creative outlet, and our kids embrace drama so effectively in their daily life, something, for the record, that they get mostly from me. They enjoyed the show, but in terms of taking part, seemed a bit ambivalent, which is fine by us. We are just always searching for the golden creative expression outlet. The search continues.

Either way, it was a nice day, though the cold has returned. We went to the show, the kids played a bit in the park in Lebanon, which was frozen solid, and then we did our usual meal at Boloco. Just for the record, Boloco was one of the sponsors of the show. You realize how much volunteerism and donations play a role in putting on a production like what we saw. Everyone worked so hard, not just the actors, but everyone behind the scenes. Kudos to them all.

In the continuing saga of anger management, things have been going well, thus far. Sure, there are moments when I get a little heated, but it's more of a simmer rather than a boil, and I've yet, in the past three days (but who's counting?) to make the kids cry, at least from anger. Crying because I wouldn't let them have ice cream doesn't count.

Dwelling on it more, I've found it's really about being in the moment, not neccessarily anticipating that bad events are around every corner. I'm finding that being aware of everything I'm doing and in a way, having my mind engaged all the time, helps to combat being blindsided by frustration and anger. Furthermore, by being a little more on the ball, I tend to make fewer mistakes (the same ones that set me off) and work a little more diligently at preventing them. This is where the little moments that frustrate me can be avoided. Most of my mistakes are deeply rooted in apathy and ambivalence.

In the end, it seems to boil down to being proactive-not waiting or hoping for something to happen but working diligently towards making it happen and keeping it in mind and focusing on it. Then, when it's realized, it's all the more satisfying, but when it doesn't work out, not only is it in your own hands, but at least your prepared for the letdown and it doesn't sneak up on you and bite you on the behind.

As you can see, I'm still trying to figure this all out, and for now, it's all coming out a mish-mash, but at least it's coming out. For now, I'll take it.

Until the next time, thanks for reading.

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