"All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts ..."
Recently I was having a casual conversation with a co-worker about her experiences as an actress, dancer, choreographer, and stage director. I mentioned that it had been a long time since I had been involved in anything having to do with line prompts, stage direction, and footlights. I noted that somewhere along the way I had traded in the stage for the pen and pulpit.
She looked at me with a smile, raised an amused eyebrow and said, "It's all theater."
I took no offense, because I know that -- to some extent -- it was a true statement. The fact is we do all play different parts in our lives. It's has to do with growth and change and maturing and "finding" one's self.
Daughters may become wives and mothers and grandmothers. Sons may become husbands and fathers and grandfathers. They may all become business people and entrepreneurs or ministers and missionaries. Some are teachers, while others remain learners. Still others become master gardeners or musicians or recording artists, or just plain artists. They may be soldiers or first responders, and others may work with children or older adults. Many are doctors or nurses or other medical professionals. Some are hunters or trappers while others fish. For better or worse, some become writers.
And everyone plays each particular role the best they can.
In my nearly fifty-six years I have had many roles; too many to list in this short account. Suffice it to say I have done much while -- most likely - accomplishing little. Of all the roles I've tackled, I now believe the most important ones were the ones I probably didn't pull-off all that well.
But I will never stop trying. Someday soon I may get the lines right without so many prompts; I may become receptive to direction and learn to exit stage right -- or left - at the appropriate time.
Then I can take a final bow with the satisfaction of knowing I did my very best.
After all ... It's all theater.