At the heart of the Addams Family musical lies two central themes: one is the question of what constitutes “normal” when it comes to families. The second is about facing your fears, and heading toward the unknown. For the characters in the show, it means letting go of your need to be safe and secure all the time.
As I head into the final 5 weeks on tour, I am realizing how much this has come true for me.
We have spent the last week going from the top of the country to the bottom. We started in Omaha, then went to North Dakota, Iowa, Oklahoma and now we head to Texas. Although I still could not identify many of these states on a map, I have seen the beauty of the roads leading up to each one.
When I started this journey, I hated hotels. They made me claustrophobic and anxious. While I still prefer my house and my bed, I no longer panic at the sign of a hotel room. Even when the one I had this past week in Iowa had what appeared to be bloodstains all over the carpet, a broken shower, and no working electricity, I did not panic. I simply marched downstairs and asked for a new one, preferably without gun shot residue. And even though the hotel manager assured me that, “we do our best to shampoo the carpets, ma’am”, I soldiered on. I snuggled up in my pink Walmart sheets, took a Valium, and tried not to look over at Sam, snuggled softly under the gold comforter that I assume has not been washed since the 70s.
We had an unexpected twist this week when our overnight stop, Oklahoma City, was hit by a horrible tornado days before. We went anyway, and the cast pitched in to buy items that were needed to help the victims. I also did my part to help the economy by shopping at the local Old Navy to stock up on some jammies for me.
I never thought I would travel to a town so hard hit so soon after a tragedy. Although we were not in the heart of it, I could feel the sense of community there. It was not as scary as I thought it would be to be so close to something so raw with sadness, when you see so much hope. Also I should point out that the only cast member’s moms that were scared about our travel route were the Jewish moms, who constantly texted to make sure their children were safe. And we Jews wonder why we are so stressed all the time.
I also have missed the last week of school for my kids..and they have survived. I have survived too, and, although I feel a sadness in my heart, I know now that they can be ok without me for a bit. This is a huge accomplishment for control freak/micromanaging me.
I still hate flying, or traveling when there is rain or snow or wind or even a light breeze, but I’m getting better.
I am coming home to a new life without my job but with a new sense of what is possible. “Move toward the darkness, welcome in your pain. Let each foreign forest offer you it’s rain. Only at our lowest, can we rise above. Move toward your darkness, and love.” Thank you Addams Family for helping me do exactly what you sing about in the final moments of the show.
Tonight we are performing in Midland, TX. As you can see from the pictures, there is not much around here besides oil rigs, so you know that this is the hometown of George W Bush. Also there appears to be a very scary storm moving in. But I am not afraid.
Just kidding. I’m completely freaking out. Some things will never change.