Finding ‘The Why’

I had one of those experiences last night where I could literally feel my heart swell inside of my chest.

And not because I ran into my former scene partner from acting school who literally is the doppelgänger of Enrique Eglasias.

enrique-iglesias-2015-wallpaper-1

Hubba hubba.

Yeah no.

Sorry, completely inappropriate for the topic of tonight’s post. Although…is it though? Because the woman this post is about, my late acting teacher, put us together as scene partners, because she “saw us lookers together.”

I don’t know what she saw in me, but I’ll take it…


Ah, here come the waterworks.

My acting teacher recently passed away. She was the epitome of old New York Broadway glamour. She was in her nineties. A broadway starlet in her heyday. Had a legendary affair with an elite Hollywood movie star – to the point that he wrote a book about her. But more than any of those accolades, she was a great teacher. And she believed in me.

Last night, at my acting school in NYC, they held a celebration in her honor. It was standing room only in the auditorium where people had literally flown in from all over the country – and even around the world – to gather to pay their respects and say something kind about the woman who changed their lives.

Like I said: this woman was incredible — and personally taught Alec Baldwin, Adam Sandler…I could go on.

Listening to everyone share their favorite memories, and the impact she had on their lives, it made me realize the breadth of this woman’s heart. She gave. She personally invested in each and every one of those people there, and made them feel empowered. She instilled in them the power to believe in themselves. And that is a beautiful thing.

I went home that night, and thumbed through all of my old acting journals from my time in her class. And I had some good chuckles at some of her idioms that were “so her.” She’d always utter in her raspy, heavily New York accented voice: “You’ve got ta find the why!” And of course, “Where’s the humor?”

But I’ll never forget a moment that we had after class one day. I had done a particularly emotional scene….with doppelgänger Enrique…but she asked me to stay after.

And I wrote down our interaction, because I was just taken aback at how perceptive she was. She got me. That was the thing about Hope, is that the very first day of class, you walk on stage by yourself, and she instantly is able to tell you your weakness as an actor. Which sounds incredibly harsh and just…yikes! But it’s not at all like that. It’s a growing exercise. And frankly, free therapy.

But that night, she said, “There’s more going on inside of you than you’re letting out. And that’s what we want to see. That’s the emotion.”

She nailed it, didn’t she?

This was pre-BBB. Pre-book. Pre-even remembering or allowing a thought about that time during my eating disorder to cross my mind. I had it all bottled up. Those memories and feelings were suppressed in the deepest recesses of my spirit. And Hope knew. She could sense that there was more behind my eyes.


What she said to me that evening, it stuck with me. In fact, I’d like to think that it was the seed that grew to move me to start writing about my past and start this blog.

I know that the most recent posts on this blog are all motivational, positive, faith-centric. But that is the result of a dramatic evolution.

When I started this blog, it was to get my story out. Not for an audience. Or for recognition. But for me. To dig up those broken, shattered pieces of my past that I had buried away. The emotion that Hope knew I had somewhere deep down, hidden away.

This blog was my unearthing process. Shared with the possible hopes that it could bring insight or perspective to a sufferer or loved one.

My teacher, Hope, taught me that my story was worth telling.

She cared. And she made me believe I was capable of sharing it.


Back in that musty black box theater in the East Village of Manhattan, seeing everyone come together to honer that 4’11” bundle of dynamite, I was fighting back tears.

She was a courage fosterer. A confidence builder. A soul searcher and pull-er-out-er.

I can’t believe I was so blessed to have had the opportunity to learn from such a giving, empowering, and perceptive woman.

I’m realizing now, that the true measure of our lives is the collection of what we give, rather than what we do or achieve.

And even though Hope had lived out both of those things, quite impressively, every person in that room was celebrating how she had given them something intangible that changed their lives for the better.


I guess after all, she lived out her own philosophy: Find the why. 

Why do we live? She answered it through example: we live to love.  

***Thanks to everyone who has ordered my book, Bloom: A Journal by BeautyBeyondBones!***

Click here to order your copy!

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beautybeyondbones

BBB: Because we're all recovering from something. // For speaking/business inquiries: beautybeyondbones@yahoo.com

193 thoughts on “Finding ‘The Why’

  1. Glad you had a teacher like that!! She may or may not have seen your works recently, but now from Heaven, I am sure she is looking down proud. Its interesting how teachers can make us do things in one way or another. You had a teacher that inspired what you try to do and be. Recently a teacher of my HS, who was there when I was in MS passed. He ran our HS Band Program and was a big influence on many. BUT he was a fav player and while some got all his highs, others got all his lows. I knew much of him from my sister and overall, wasn’t pleased from what I saw of him. He left just before I entered HS and it was a mess for a few years with the “fallout” from his “devotees”. I vowed to not be the best “like” him, but be my best “unlike” him. to educate and inspire ALL my students, not just the high achievers. Much love and all my hugs every day!! xoxoxoxoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  2. God bless little old ladies like her! That person who just sees you and accepts you and cares about you and urges you on all at once – that’s the kind of person whose input means the most and whose actions we are most inclined to imitate. The Hopes of the world are, in a way our hope for the future. Of course that role ultimately belongs to God, but people like that are usually His greatest instruments. You were blessed to know her. Continue on and bless others, as I know you try to do. ❤

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  3. I love the “what is done in love is done well” picture quote, mind if I use it on my blog?
    also great post. Sometimes we just need someone to speak some truth to us in an understanding way.

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  4. Well well well well well well. What unique blog. I think it’s night the post you found out the reason why. You may notice that nerd for news does not exist anymore. It’s not because of the reasons you may think. Over time I realized that I can have the best numbers in any website however I was losing focus on the task at hand. And I was losing focus as trying to verify the reason why I started the blog to begin with. Seems like the more social I got the more Focus I forgot. And I did get more social as time went on. You may not like this but even you have to admit it you and I are exactly the same the only difference is 4 different genders. But we’re both Americans if you really think about it. I closed down the block because I didn’t want to present Social Gospel and I thought with my latest rains it was becoming just that. I think I would like to start another one up but I don’t want it to become more Social Gospel again. My condolences to your Broadway teacher. I’m not one to like celebrities very much but even I found the Enrique Iglesias comment funny and the reason I found that funny is because I know Alex Daddario isn’t going to knock on my door anytime soon and if she does she’s going to bring a Samoan with her for protection.

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  5. Lovely post. RIP HOPE and thank you for giving us BBB – the gold version. We only enjoy life to the level to which we are willing to “give@ ours away for others. Thanks C. Been on the road, so I’m only now catching up on BBB Newsfeed.

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