The curtain pulls back, letting in the light and I let myself go. Every word I speak comes from what feels like a hidden treasure chest of emotion and feeling inside me, a chest that I have kept locked for far too long. I can feel what Mary is feeling and I know how she is going to react and I understand who she is and why she is hiding and I step out into the dream, stand straight and tall and believe that I am beautiful and powerful and loved.
The scene ends. The audience whoops and claps and I can see, in the front row in the middle seats, my mother, tears running down her cheeks and splashing on her jacket. She's clapping and crying, an odd combination, I think briefly to myself, but that's what happens in life when things are complicated. You can clap and you can cry, both at once and it doesn't matter as long as you are being truthful about how you feel.
What about you? Can you clap and cry both at the same time?