Once i got to the theater, I was in total denial that I would be performing that night. I walked in and saw M. We went into the theater and set up lighting and sound cues. I did a run through. Still total denial. Tried to warm up. (Note to self: Build a personal warm up) Audience came in and, all of a sudden, I heard the curtain speech.
I grab C and we go to the wing and hide behind the curtain. 15 seconds before I go onstage, I give myself a little pep talk and treat myself to some oxygen. The last note I have always given myself before I go onstage is best related by this quote:
I smiled to myself as I sat on the stool in the dark. Really smiled big, in spite of myself. A real, honest to goodness, smile that came naturally from inside my being. I didn't pull the cormers of my mouth up. I didn't smile for anyone. It was a smile of delight. A rare smile expressing my true being. I wasn't saying cheese for the camera. I smiled without a thought about my teeth. I smiled. I didn't smile to make anyone happy. It was a simple and pure smile. It felt great. Underneath the smile, my thoughts whispered "yeah, let's go"