The very first serious one was one of the theatre. I loved it. Go figure that the happy and sad drama masks that I almost had tattooed on myself would have had a perfect ironic double meaning later in life with the Bipolar Disorder.
At first, I loved being on stage. I was a decent vocalist and I enjoyed the rush of the stage, the heat of the lights, the feedback from the audience, the commraderie with the cast, just everything.
Later, I started working backstage. I started taking a class as part of a technical theatre program and I did all sorts of things from set building, to sound, to rigging curtains and backdrops, to running scenery, to working on costumes and props, to lighting.
It was the lighting thing that inspired me from the daily prompt today because I must have Focused and refocused the lights in my home theatre at least a hundred times if I did it once. It was important that the lights be trained on specific areas depending on where the cast was in certain scenes, depending on where scenery was, to ensure that no area was too bright, etc. Often a lighting designer had a concept in mind which made focusing much easier, but sometimes we had to just kind of wing it and make it look nice.
I eventually went on to assistant direct for many shows and decided that was where my forte was, but I still carry the love of the theatre in my heart.
The funny thing is, my most active period in the theatre was from about 10-26 years old. It feels like an entire lifetime. Sometime around 22 I started getting involved in politics and that began taking over my life and I was busy in a flurry of activity with that until age 28 or so and that feels like a full lifetime. I also bartended on and off from 25-33 and that feels distinct and different and like another lifetime as well.
Three completely separate lives that overlap, with totally different sets of people, and I can’t help but feel like I truly lived through all of them.
Now I would kill to just get part of that feeling back with something new. I just haven’t found passion #4 yet. Maybe it will be part of my old lives, maybe it won’t. I wouldn’t trade them for anything though.