The moment I've feared is near. Yes, folks, my sanity is slowly slipping away from me.
I have often had moments throughout this developmental process when I've asked myself, "Are you out of your mind?" And, from where I'm standing today, the answer seems to be, "yes."
The amount of work involved in order to keep this process flowing smoothly is massive. That's a given. I spent my whole weekend working on Helen stuff, and didn't even put a dent in it. AND, I still have two loads of laundry sitting in my doorway that I never got around to doing.
But, the work, I can deal with. It's the pressure that I'm struggling with. The pressure to raise the money. The pressure to keep writing blogs day in an out. The pressure to figure out how to stage the end of the show so that it has an impact. The pressure to make sure I'm respecting and responding to all of the many, many people who have helped Helen get to where she is. The pressure to make tough decisions. The pressure to stand my ground and be a leader. The pressure to make this experience a fruitful and gratifying one for all those involved. The pressure to juggle multiple jobs that have nothing to do with Helen. The pressure to not make too many mistakes as I navigate the waters of this very unfamiliar territory. The pressure to make sure the show is as brilliant as it can possibly be. The pressure to make everything seem as though it's as easy as pie and trouble-free.
I guess I just failed at the last one, because I'm here to tell you that while it all might seem seamless and happy-go-lucky, this is all incredibly stressful... and every so often, it takes its toll on me.
To illustrate, let me tell you about one of my recent nightmares. We had cast John Lithgow as Mr. Dodd and while we were rehearsing, he got on his cell phone and called his agent to complain about how terrible the show was, how annoying the kids where, how the snacks were bad and the stipend too low--and how he wanted out (minutes before the reading was about to start). While Robby rehearsed with the kids, I pulled Mr. Lithgow into the hallway and proceeded to sob as I explained to him how I was working three jobs and trying to produce and develop a new musical, and would he please just do the reading for us. I woke up in a cold sweat.
That's my life, right now.
But, as they say, "this too, shall pass."