it's been a while - like a few weeks - since i've had this experience, it used to happen almost every morning. getting in the shower, or preparing for work in the morning, the wave of regret and guilt hits me and the thought: why didn't i just go to memphis, or anywhere else?

two years ago, i graduated with a BA in theatre performance after battling a lot of life's twists and turns (dropping out, bad grades, the divorce...) and to top it off, went straight to a genuine job at a theatre company in cincinnati. so many good things were flooding over me. my parents helped me move, i had a boyfriend - the best friend i never anticipated - and i was going to live downtown and walk to the theatre every day. i was going to make connections and charm people and surprise them with my management and creative abilities.

none of it, none of the big parts, were what i expected.

and on quiet or dark mornings, i still wake up and blame myself for not being better. why couldn't i do what i've seen a zillion other creative, talented theatre types do and just throw myself into things there? why could i not connect? i know there are a zillion reasons why. i've gone through them all.

i suppose that this is my one regret over the last couple of years. self-derailment.

one of my favorite people, someone who gave me beyond excellent references when i was hunting for theatre work, asked me what happened there the other day. i was more than glad he asked, it gave me a chance to think about it. it's still hard to sum up.

it didn't work out. i got distracted. it wasn't what i expected. i wasn't what they expected. it was a time when i was sorting out some things spiritually and mentally. it was a time when i was falling in love and far from the man i wanted to marry.

so many things were healing in my heart that i needed fixed. so many things were happening in my head that just needed to happen. all the dark and brooding thoughts from many years of dissapointment were shrinking away... i had gotten my degree, i'd proved to myself that i could do something i'd always wanted. i'd even won the respect of mentors that i loved. i'd been part of a church that felt like home. i saw myself as an intelligent, well rounded and creative woman who could offer a small amount of hard earned wisdom.

i wonder if any job i'd taken would have stuck at that time.

i still had some wilderness to climb through before i could see my newer self. i couldn't get traction in cincinnati, maybe it was because i was simply meant to keep walking through. it meant i lost something i'd wanted for a long time, but i also gained things that will be with me a lifetime. that, i don't regret.

life has been weird, good, rewarding, hard and unexpected since then. i am married to the best person i know. he puts up with my strange ways, even enjoys them. i am having a baby. wow. i've worked a year in a school system that has shown me that i can teach and enjoy it. the community in winfield is a good one, and i am thankful God led us to stay here and help minister and work in the church here for a while. i am beyond proud of my husband's academic achievements, and how he has grown spiritually and in his ability to lead and teach.

it's a good life. sometimes i still feel like i'm simply in another transition, and i am, but it is one that i trust and do not fear. i have chosen it. i still ache to do something creative. i still miss working on shows, and being at the center of it. i will be there again. i have to be.

someday, i will direct the plays i have listed in the back of my journal since i was a junior in college. someday i will find the right place, and the right way to do theatre again. it may be with a sleeping baby wrapped in a sling on my hip, or with my husband watching little ezri while i take notes and write down blocking... but i can do it, and want to, in the right time.

when i get some traction. somewhere. i know how to look to the horizon and keep my feet on the ground.