I’m working hard on my self-care, but most days I feel like I’m growing at a snail’s pace. When I do notice some growth, I get very excited and try to celebrate the moment. Well, I had a win over the weekend that I want to share with you.
Sunday, The Man surprised me with tickets to Angry, Raucous and Shamelessly Gorgeous at the Alliance Theatre. He gets so many cool points by the way for setting up a VERY Cyrah date. Anyway, we thoroughly enjoyed the show, laughing incessantly and soaking up the playwright’s words.
We were leaving on a high when I recognized a stage manager I worked with before. I would’ve normally just walked out, but she was so kind to me on my last play, I wanted to say hello. I walked up to her and said hey. I reminded her of the show we worked on together, and she asked what I was up to. I told her I was currently in a show that runs in June. She asked me what theatre, and my mind went blank.
I looked crazy. In the Atlanta theatre community, this woman is an industry mover and shaker. She knows everyone who’s anyone. She started rattling off the names of theatres, and I said no to the ones she could remember, but my mind gave me nothing. All I kept thinking was “Alliance” because…that’s where we were. Finally, she said, “You don’t know where you’re working?”
For me, ego manifests itself as a need to be acknowledged as amazing and worth loving. It’s an addiction to feeling important. The moment she said that, my ego was challenged. I think this is what happens when people get defensive. We start defending our importance to make us feel better about ourselves. In that moment, I could have let that effect how I felt about myself, but I didn’t.
I told her the name of the show, and that I couldn’t remember the name of the theatre at the moment because I was still basking in the glow of what I’d experienced. This was the truth. I watched four actors do great work, and I was inspired. I was in that post-show high. My mind was on what they’d done, not promoting my thing. So, when she asked me about my thing, my brain had nothing. I told her when the play opened. She assured me that she’d see it, and she left.
Let me tell you why this was a win. I may have looked crazy to her, but I authentically DID NOT CARE. I said hello to her because I enjoyed working with her, not because I wanted her to do something for me. I may have made a fool of myself by not being able to promote my upcoming show, but I wasn’t embarrassed. I know exactly what I’m doing and where I’m doing it. I’m good at what I do. I know the play I’m working on, but I had a brain fart. It happened, and I was fine with that in the moment. I didn’t beat myself up. I didn’t try to redeem myself because I didn’t need redeeming. I knew who I was.
Months ago, I would have rehearsed this moment over and over, trying to figure out how to avoid it in the future. I would have immediately contacted her on Facebook the moment I remembered the name of the theatre. I may still do that, so she has accurate information about the show. But I’m impressed with myself because I’m not pressed. After she left, I continued to bask in my post-show high and enjoyed the rest of the evening.
At some point, I probably will get caught up in ego and have to check myself. I’m human. But for now, I’m celebrating this moment. I wasn’t caught up in what someone else thought of me. My self-worth was rooted in something deeper. I didn’t let ego suck the joy out of my beautiful evening. I kept it moving, and I’m proud of myself for doing so.
About me . . .
I'm Cyrah Hill. I'm a woman of faith, an actor and an everyday black girl.