Despite my continuous efforts to convince both the world and myself that I dislike people, the truth is, I really like people. I like the way that people make you feel when they are kind, I like that human touch can be so powerful, and I like that everyone claims to hate small talk when in reality, most don’t. Personally, I love small talk. Perhaps this is because of my always-present commitment issues, or maybe just because I love to network, but whatever the reason, I enjoy talking with people about things that hold very little meaning simply for the sake of interaction.
Recently, my friend, Mat, and I realized that although we’ve known each other for over a year and talk/text almost daily, we didn’t know much about each other. I knew that he was raised in Canada and he knew that I was getting my BFA in Acting. We knew about each other’s eating habits and sense of style and could probably even give a pretty good description of what kissing each other felt like. But aside from those very surface aspects, we didn’t know each other at all. So two weeks ago, after a particularly rough week, we finally started talking.
Mat has a strong desire to become famous and I don’t kiss and tell, so I won’t share the details, but I will say that I was surprised in us. As caring as we both are to others, we somehow forgot to do the same for ourselves. By beginning the process of opening up to each other, we’ve started to allow ourselves a little bit of kindness.
Now, I’m not saying that we’ve both spilled our souls or have suddenly thrown off the masks, but the strings have at least been loosened. I’m learning to be vulnerable, which is something that doesn’t come easily, but more than that, I’m learning to listen. I’m learning to take in the stories, facts, and information, rather than simply acknowledging it and moving on. Talk about relearning everything, right?
So this is where we are: a little over a year after we initially met, finally getting to know each other, rehearsing a show in which we play fiancés/soon to be parents, and attempting to hold out for a future that will hopefully include us keeping in touch. It’s a melancholy feeling, but I know I’m better for it and hopefully, Mat feels the same. Here’s to new hellos to old friends and starting over when we have no idea what we’re doing.
ALSO (shameless plug), come see Poseidon’s Regret by John Perovich at Brelby Theatre Company! It runs from August 13-16th and you can buy tickets here, and get a discount by using my code WILLA at checkout.