Half a Lifetime Ago

I just got home from seeing my nephew Tanner in his high school musical. I have to say I am very impressed by the job that Hillcrest High School did in "Aida". The leads were fantastic, the sets were great and the chorus - although really large - was wonderful.

Mainly I left the show feeling very nostalgic. It was 16 years ago that I first went to Hillcrest High School to see their musical. I was new to Cottonwood High School and in the musical. Some of us made an effort to go and see the local high school's productions. I remember so clearly the night we went to Hillcrest to see their production of "West Side Story." I remember being thrilled that I was actually invited to go. This was the first time I was invited to hang out with the "older/cool" kids. From then on we were close friends. This was the first time I felt part of this great group of friends - even if Joe Smith wouldn't let me sit by Jason and physically picked me up and moved me down the aisle.

I remember when I was just 16 and Tanner was a baby. I was spending all of my time at musical rehearsals. I remember balancing my classes with all of my extra-carricular activities and feeling so overwhelmed. It's been fun to watch Tanner the last couple of months experience this. While I heard him complain several times about being tired from all the hours he was spending at school - I knew he was loving it. Because I loved it.

That was 1/2 of a lifetime ago. Wow. How is this possible? How in the world did I become 30 years old?

Here is Tanner when I was 16.

And here is Tanner now - fresh haircut - for the musical.

I told him that he should feel lucky that he had to cut his hair - rather than grow it. I seem to recall some really ugly hair from my friends leading up to "The Crucible".

I think he misses his afro though.

Some of my greatest memories as a teenager stemmed from my high school musicals. I remember being in the chorus of "My Fair Lady" my sophomore year and crushing so hard on Jason Rhead it almost hurt.

I remember those long Saturday rehearsals and late school nights. I remember the costumes, the rituals, the gossip and the songs. I remember being a bit annoyed that I had to be a boy in "Oliver" my junior year - but I also recall how Mark Gurney lit up the stage.

I remember the pain I felt when I wasn't selected as a lead my senior year in "Guys & Dolls" but being excited to see so many of my dear friends finally have their chance to shine.

Tonight I found myself really choked up during the curtain call of "Aida." I know how it feels to hear an audience applaud your performance. There was a time in my life where I really thought I was going to be an actress. Because what other career could possibly help me feel the way I did during curtain call?! Funny, I wasn't good enough to be a lead even in my high school musical but I still had that dream.

So tonight I did feel a bit sad. I miss the theater. I haven't done a show since high school, which is fine. I have obviously found a career that fulfills me and at this point in my life I don't think I could stand to be around theater people all the time (no offense to my dear and talented friends who have managed to find success in this field).

But I do miss being 16. I miss my biggest problems being whether or not my crush likes me. Whether or not I'll get an A on my chemistry test, or whether I will get asked to Prom by the guy I really want to ask me. I miss that. While I know at the time it all feels much more serious, now it is just sounds so nice.

Doesn't it?

Being a grown up can suck a lot of the time. Now I don't worry about whether the boy likes me. I worry about whether I am being a good enough wife to keep him happy. I don't worry about grades. I worry about my career and whether I am raising enough money to sustain an organization I am passionate about. I don't worry about allowance and having enough to go to dinner with my friends. I worry about how we'll ever afford this new baby we are having in less than 3 months.

Life was so much more simple when I was 16. Dreaming about a life on the stage....

Oh how I envy my nephew.

Enjoy the ride Tanner....

The ADD & The OCD

Seth and I have been watching a lot of Modern Family. This show has definitely climbed the ranks to be my favorite TV comedy. If you aren't watching it - shame on you! Ok, not shame on you, it took me a year of people talking about it to get into it. Really though it's wonderful. I belly laugh every episode. It also has a lot of heart. It's not too rare to find myself choked up over an episode. It's a great show. Watch it. I beg you.

As we have watched this Seth and I have realized how much like Claire and Phil we are. I'm sure everyone that watches this show can relate to the characters and probably feel the same way. I think the reason we relate so well to them is that Phil has ADD (attention deficit disorder) and Claire has OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) paired with neurotic tendencies. This is Seth and I. I love Phil and I find that Claire drives me crazy on the show. I suppose that is how it should be though right? We tend to hate what we see in ourselves?

I am very OCD - a topic which I have blogged about before:

Seth has ADD. Some days I will come home when he has had a day off of work and I will find the house a complete mess. I will see several projects that have been started and not finished. The TV will be on, his laptop will be open and he will be frazzled. This is how I expect to find him most days. Other days he hyper-focuses on stuff and works like a mad man to get a project completed. He leaves me long rambling voice messages. Often I know he is distracted by something while he is leaving me a message (a car the passes him, something on TV, a piece of paper). In his regular speech he has a hard time completing a sentence or thinking of a word (even a basic word like vacuum). This is all very frustrating for him. And me. Sometimes.

We have found ourselves laughing hysterically as Phil and Claire navigate their ways through their marriage with these two competing disorders. And yet it works.

The same could be said for us.

While I find myself ready to KILL Seth because of his "piles" around the house, or the way he absolutely forgets about plans we have, or the way that he gets distracted from project to project, in the end I find him very endearing.

While I know Seth hates that I can't go to bed without my pillows being in the exact spot, or my face washed/teeth brushed. He hates that I refuse to go to bed with dirty dishes. He thinks it is odd that I have to separate my candy by colors and eat them in twos. He hates that I can't relax until things are picked up. After all of this, he somehow still loves me.

Seth teaches me to relax. He teaches me to not worry about cleaning or organizing but just to take it easy with him. He has taught me that it is ok to not have everything perfect. And honestly, living with Seth perfection isn't really a possibility.

In the same regard I help Seth stay focused. I help him make to-do lists. I help him follow-through with a project. Most days I help him finish his sentences.

We just balance each other out. While we want to kill each other many days, we work.

Last night we had a terrible fight. The stress of the baby, a house being under construction, money issues, fears about how drastically our lives are going to change, etc. just added up and boiled over. We worked through it but it was a rough couple of hours. We decided that what we needed was to watch Modern Family - and to laugh.

So we sat down - and once again the show proved very real to us.

There is scene in the episode we watched last night in which Phil and Claire discuss their son Luke. Claire is afraid that Luke is ADD like Phil and they take him to a child psychologist.

The psychologist claims that Luke is just fine. But Claire, being the neurotic mother that she is expresses her worry to Phil. She says, "How will Luke survive?" to which Phil replies "Somewhere there is a 12-year-old little girl who is busy labeling her toys and obsessively organizing her bedroom."

At this line I started to cry. And I glanced over at Seth - who was also a bit choked up. Which made me cry even harder.

I was that 12-year-old girl. Oddly obsessive and really neurotic. I am sure that Seth's parents worried how Seth and his ADD would ever survive.

Yet somehow we find people that compliment us.

And I love that.