There is a stage in all of us. There are no props or script available just a dimly cast stool waiting for you. It's wooden panels, musting curtains and empty seats are not waiting for you to tell story or entertain, all they are asking for is the truth. Throughout life we learn many faces of deception. We rely on schemes that are capable of curving the spine of truth. This stage is where the major events of life take place. Events that can have hundreds of witnesses in the audience or only you and a chilling breeze. It is our choice where we place ourselves here. You can hide behind the curtains, join the audience, dance around the light or step directly into it.
I'd say my childhood, as well as most others, was spent wrapped in the warmth of the curtains. I was safe here. I could peek through the increasing tears of the dark fabric and catch glimpses of what awaited me. How bright was this light? How much of me can it expose? Who was in the audience? And what in the hell do they want from me? What I didn't expect is that I was not the only person on stage. There were people I hardly knew and those closest to me who had their cameos in my developing play. Some of them would reach out to me for brief dance lessons of love and joy. My mothers always led the dances. Showing me all the steps, reminding me of posture and tilting my chin to the sky. My sister would come quickly after her exit and trace maps in the dust collecting on the stage floor. She showed me where she had tripped, where she had fallen and the ways she found the strength to stand. And as for my father, he gave me what too many little girls go without... He let me balance on his own feet and follow the already beaten path.
These safety characters also play a key role when the new ones arrive. These people have to be invited to your stage and in exchange you learn how to trust. You allow them on stage and some of them offer your dance of life color and vibrance while others do not. They whisper your name in hush tones backstage and leave a lingering foot out to descretely throw your step. What's worse is you see their foot and intentions but are captivated by the beautiful masks they display. So you allow them to stay and depend on your core characters to lift you up when you take the fall. So what happens when the your core leaves the stage.. or they just can't make appearances as often as they used to? Siblings have children and pursue their own dreams and parents have given you the map hoping they've taught you how to find your way. You are left to pick yourself up and this is when the audience becomes interested.. when truth takes the lead.
This happens to be the point I am at on my stage. For the first time I am having to cut existing characters and make callbacks for those who deserve the role. I can hide in the safety of the curtains, join the audience and wait for a show or hold my breath and step into the light.