Is a play really a play if it does not have an audience?
Is not our part (perhaps described as row N seat 23, the quiet fidget, absorbed, stifling a cough, holding a sweet wrapper in the dark) part of the play too? Even though we are not seen until the very end when the lights go up, do we not bring the validation, the energy and the reason for it to be?
When tomorrow comes, I wonder will it arrive with that feeling of air being pulled from our lungs with the clattering whoosh of the fast train hurtling through the station; or will it loll semi-consciously out of its crumpled bed like an old dog uncertain of where to put its feet?
When tomorrow leaves us will it do so with a gentle sigh, and a tummy full feeling before snuggling into sweet dreams? or will it wrestle us into a half sleep with indigestible worries and jagged lists of things not done?
Will our next working day be a patchwork quilt of hope, indifference, joy, frustration, surprise, boredom and success? Or a tangled heap of miscellaneous random wires belonging to things we cannot find, do not recall having, or ever remember needing?
Is our next business meeting, a microcosm of all we dislike about small-minded point-scoring and predictable what’s-the-point-anyway cynicism; or will it be a chance to be the energy for someone else, to respect another point of view and to feel acknowledged?
Some of these feelings, and all shades of them, will be our feelings each and every day; and it is because we have these feelings that we are also players. We are never not involved. Even when we sit in the gods, far from the stage, we play our part. We are always in the story.
While all the world is a stage, we are the play within the play, within the play.
I am not saying this with the expectation that we will now run from the stalls, seize the spotlight and close the show with our mesmerising oratory. I know for sure that this is not my part and I do not want it to be my part. I say it however for all of us who need the scene to be small enough for us to be at home in it and to make the difference that we can make.
There is always a play within the play, within the play where we are the actors with the lines that count; where we can be kind, where we can listen and be the difference. There is always a scene where we can be the reason someone else shines and for us to shine too.
No matter how big or small our part may seem, we are in the play and our part is always important.
Take care. Paul x