Talking through the Tour

A was cast in a children’s tour. He received the offer last night. The long and the short of the story is this, in pieces:

The Logistics
–He’s done 2 tours with this company previously.
–They’ve been calling him in for years, but he hasn’t booked since, mostly because he’s too tall to play a kid and too young to play a grown-up.
–He went to the audition not really wanting to book it.
–It’s a 6 month tour of the midwest, northeast, and south.

Reasons He Would Take It
–Good pay (over $450 weekly and $55 daily per diem)
–He’d get to perform (which, in theory, is what he does)
–It’s fun to do a show in front of thousands of children.

The Girlfriend History
–The first tour, he cheated on his then-live-in-girlfriend
–The next tour, he met his most recent (and to my mind) most serious ex.

His Plan
–He’d take the tour, but only stay for the “local” portion. He’d start rehearsals in Jan, give his 2 weeks early Feb, then leave Feb. 15 or thereabouts.
–He reasons the pay is better than his current job (he’d only miss 5 shifts, although he’s crucial and he wouldn’t miss any Army)
–He like performing and he likes the tour
–People have given notice and left the tour before
–It’s likely his last chance to work with him
–He feels obligated because he did attend the audition and callback.

So now here’s where I’m at:
–The whole thing makes me feel ill. I told him not two days ago, in these EXACT WORDS: “Please don’t do [name of tour] again.” The shit with his two ex-girlfriends really, really weighs on me. Even his consideration of doing a month of it makes me uncomfortable. WHY?! WHY?!

–I mean, yes, there’s the fact that I connect this tour to an A I didn’t know… an A who cheated on the girl he thought he’d marry, an A who spent 3 years with a prissy girl who he got THIS apartment with. That’s my shit to figure out… but I can’t help but feel ill.

–I’m sure there’s a little part that’s jealous. I can’t even get an audition (the last one I had was 2 weeks ago, and I haven’t heard from my agent in months), or a callback, and I’m clearly not booking anything. So there’s probably a part of me that is angry that he gets this and I don’t. It’s never been so hard to date an actor, I think. I kind of just want him to be a writer… which is terrible!… but kinda true.

–I’m possessive. Super possessive, I think. I get pissy when he doesn’t introduce me to people. I always want him around. I want him to only do things for me. I’m supportive, don’t get me wrong, but I’m also intensely aware that I NEED him. Maybe that’s unhealthy… but that’s where I am.

–My greatest fear, I guess, is that he takes the tour and chickens out on giving his notice. Now, I KNOW that’s not going to happen. But I’m scared that he will give his 2 weeks and then have enjoyed the previous time so much, he’ll resent me/his other jobs/our life together for taking that away from him. Now, this could happen if he doesn’t take the tour too, but I’m afraid he’ll be thinking about reneging on his commitment all through the rehearsal process, too, and that will make him upset.

–Logistically, I can’t imagine doing a tour for less than a month (of a 6 month contract) and then giving my notice. I know people bow out, but I think I’d prefer to turn it down all the way. But then again, I can’t really imagine turning down ANYTHING at this point. So I’m a terrible judge of this. BUT then again, this tour is so wrapped up in emotions and memories and other things and is not really a career-progressor for him… so I’m not sure how he feels about it.

–I told him all this stuff, basically, this morning, via text. We texted pretty much all morning reasoning through it all. In my heart of hearts, I wanted him to say, “Okay. I’m not going to take the tour. I love you. :)” But no… we just kept talking and talking and I played devil’s advocate to his “but what if”s and I haven’t stopped feeling ill all day. Still no decision at this point, but I imagine he’ll have to make one soon.

How do I negotiate my feelings about this choice without

A) Putting him in a position where he makes a decision he doesn’t want for my sake

B) Feeling angry at him for making a decision I don’t want

C) Feeling as nauseous and unhappy as I feel right now?

Anyone? Bueller?

“She said to go ahead and feel the feelings. I did. They felt like shit.” — Anne Lamott
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