and my grateful heart, too —
This evening I saw my school's opening preview performance of The Laramie Project. I was a little bit worried about it, because I've seen the play before and was predicting, based on that and on my personal experiences at the time of Matthew Shepard's death, that it would be a very emotional event for me. It's the faculty who are invited to attend the opening preview, and I was uncomfortable with the idea of my colleagues seeing me wrecked. But I couldn't not go. So I went, and did cry during the show, but not more than anyone else, I think. The actors, all high school students, did a fantastic job. I thanked the amazing director. I walked out slowly, walking in that way you do when you're carrying an overfull cup, trying not to let what I was feeling spill over. Just outside the theater, I came to where the students were waiting in a kind of receiving group. And I just stood there with my hands together, palm to palm at my heart and pointing towards them. I stood there thanking them in halting, unplanned words, and as I spoke I cried. I told them that it was impossible to explain what this meant to me, to our community. And that although I've seen the play before, it is this production that will forever be the one that defines this play for me. I am so proud of them, and so deeply grateful. They surrounded me in a hug, and somehow I managed to drive home.