Moving Day

I’ve been talking about this for months, and now the time is here.

I’m leaving.
I’m packing up all my things.

This is it.

After over 19 years in New York City, I am moving out of the city.

And even though this is something I have always envisioned,
even though this is ultimately what I want,
even though this move is bringing me closer to the life I have been working for, for SO long….

I’m terrified.

Have you ever felt this?

Worked so hard towards your Artistic Dream, towards the acclaim you desire and a life that is deeply fulfilling doing work you love where you thrive….and THERE it is, right in front of you…and yet, you feel paralyzed?

We so commonly hear the conversation around Fear of Failure, but what about Fear of Success?

What do we DO when all we want is right in front of us, and we feel overwhelmed?


I moved to NYC back in 1998, fresh out of college, newly married, and ready to “make it”. I grabbed my Backstage paper, and went to as many auditions as I could, booking work very quickly.

After five years in college, I was ready for the hustle and bustle, and felt grounded in being married.

My focus was on my career, but family was always in the future.

I used to declare that one day, we would move out of the city, fantasizing about a real house on the Hudson River.

I was clear I didn’t want to raise a family in the city, and this was where I needed to be while I was building my career.

For live theatre, NYC is the place.

So, I stayed…and I worked, and I hit a ceiling.

My dream of Broadway felt out of my grasp.  So many close calls, final auditions….and meanwhile, my marriage that had felt like the calm in the storm was starting to crumble.

I remember doing a production of Romance Romance in the summer of 2010, and my grandmother came to see the show.  We were sitting on a bench in the heart of Cape May, NJ in the early evening summer sun, and she inquired around if I was planning on starting to have a family.  She grabbed my hand, and squeezed it, looking right through me saying,
Don’t wait too long.

I had just turned 35, and was feeling a panic.  I had always thought I would have the family by now….the Broadway show…this wasn’t the timeline I imagined.

My grandmother passed about 7 months later, and on my 36th birthday, I officially got off the pill and started trying.

Except it wasn’t working.  I was taking my temperature every day, writing down on charts, going to acupuncture…and nothing.  I began to think I was “one of those women” and something was wrong with me.

But, my body was actually protecting me.
My body knew what was coming.

Four months after my 37th birthday, my husband knelt in front of me to share he didn’t want to be married anymore and didn’t want to have kids.

And just when I thought I was going to be moving out of the city and starting a new life….I lost my married home, and moved into a very small 300 square foot one bedroom.

Everything I knew of my life burned to the ground, and I questioned if I would ever have a family.
Would I ever have that home?
Would I ever have a partner that wanted children?

As I turned the key in my new apartment, I walked into a reality I never saw coming.

And then something magical happened…
This new apartment became a cocoon.
This new apartment became a sanctuary.
This new apartment gave me quiet, and the space to create a life I couldn’t conceive of before.

I learned who I really was beneath all the criticism, self judgement, and comparison that had been running the show for so long.

And I healed my heart, learning to love again.

And I met a special man…..who came with a home.

And he lives outside NYC.
Everything I said I wanted.

So, here it is right in front of me….MOVING DAY…..and I’m terrified.
It’s pretty crazy, isn’t it?
Why do we do this to ourselves?

What is REALLY at play underneath the fear?


As Artists we work so hard.
We GIVE, and we give so much of our hearts in the process.  Our art is literally an expression of our desires, our fears, and what matters most.

We sing
We dance
We write
We create,

And all of this flows from within us, with the hopes and dreams we will evoke strong emotion in our audience, be fulfilled in our work, and create great art that allows us to thrive.

We are on output SO much, creating endlessly. Our desire so strong to receive the acclaim we desire.

So, what happens when it starts to occur?
What happens when our fans start to rave?
What happens when you are in demand?

You taste that sweetness of being seen, of being heard, of FINALLY an audience that GETS you.

And where do we go?

We get scared it will LEAVE.

As my brilliant therapist so succinctly put it,
With attachment comes fear of loss.

I have literally spent the last five years with one goal in mind,
to find my man and start a family.

With my whole being and heart I have wanted this, and it has been a birthing on a scale I didn’t even know I was capable of.

So, naturally, I am terrified it will slip through my fingers…
just like my last marriage.

And yet, here is the miracle.

This came into my life because I stayed IN it.  It came because I gave energy to it, day after day. This move is a manifestation of my efforts.

And now the next chapter begins.

And just like the woman who felt so lost and terrified five years ago, I know what is most important.

The fear is PART OF the journey.

And maybe that home I had been seeking for so long, was in me all along.
Maybe connecting to my inner home, was really the grounding I was needing.

Because that home….never leaves.

“Big challenges stretch us beyond our self-image to something deeper.  Who we think we are won’t win this challenge, but who we really are can”
-Robert Holden


So, what grounds you in your life?

It’s from this “home” you will create your best work, and have the CAPACITY to deal with the fear as it arises. I stand here today and share with you I’m scared AND I am moving WITH that fear.

The fear hasn’t stopped me from moving.  I may lose it all, and that’s the chance I am willing to take.  In fact, I know life has an end point, and it’s because I know it will end, that I am FREED to take action.

This is your life.  How do want to live your days?


What would be possible if you moved WITH your fear?
What action would you take in your Art?

Pack up your things, it’s moving day.



Photography: Caitlin Cannon Photography

The Gift That Changed My Life

It was the worst Christmas of my life.

I remember getting out of the cab with my luggage and seeing my husband.  I had just flown back from a six week contract doing A Christmas Carol out at the Pioneer Theatre in Salt Lake City, Utah, and was still reeling from his Thanksgiving proclamation he no longer loved me anymore.

He had basically refused to go into it over the phone, so here I was back home….praying this could be saved.

He greeted me at the cab, and every muscle in my body tensed.  As he helped me with my bags, I thought…could there be a miracle?

When I walked into our home and saw he had actually decorated, a surge of hope came up in me, but underneath was something far darker.

This may look like Christmas from the outside, but it was not reflective of our truth. Yes, there were lights and a tree….but they were covering up immense pain.

Actually, this was the real reflection……pretty lights covering up something that was, and had been broken for years.

I went into the bedroom, and curled up into a ball and began to cry.


With everything falling apart, we didn’t travel to see family, so on Christmas morning, we woke to each other, from separate beds.

Christmas day had always been a day of great celebration.

As a child, my parents would have my brother and I wait while the lights were turned on, and we would rush down the stairs to see what Santa brought.

There would be music playing, my parents standing by the tree with arms open, and Santa hats on their heads.

Christmas morning was always filled with LOVE.

This Christmas I woke up in great fear, anxiety and pain.  I prayed for a miracle.  I prayed that the day would end this nightmare, and we would have a happy home again.

Everything felt upside down.  We were exchanging gifts and all I wanted to scream out was,
Why are you giving me this if you don’t love me anymore??

My stomach turned with confusion and anger with everything he gave me.

Thankfully, there were other gifts there.

I opened one from my parents, and soon was holding in my hands beautiful black binoculars.

For years, I had gone on hikes with my parents and borrowed theirs when we were bird watching, so they had finally bought me my own pair.

So that I could see on my own.

I held them for a moment, feeling something very different building in me. A different view.  Turning them over in my hands and bringing them to my eyes, I realized I could see farther.

Farther than my small living room in Queens, and my immense pain.


Have you ever been in a really challenging situation in your Art?

Have you felt the dark cold of rejection, and loss?

What’s more, has this happened during a time when everything and everyone around you is celebrating?

It can be so difficult to put on a “show” or a happy face when inside everything is falling apart.

And we feel this deeply as Artists.

In fact, it affects our art directly, and our ability to attract our audience.

The holidays can be especially challenging as there is a pressure to be celebratory ALL the time.  So, what tends to occur is two extremes….
Extreme Jingle Bell Cheer
Silent Night Shut Down

Neither one is sustainable.  It’s the roller coaster. 

So, what do we do in these moments when our hearts are breaking? How do we continue in our work that is so personal and means so much?


This past week, I led my clients through a powerful Native American Medicine Wheel.

We began with our Successes, then made our way around the wheel to our Surprises, our Failures, and finally our Wisdom.

The wisdom was crucial, because it gave all of my clients the deep a-ha as to their next steps.  They left the call feeling empowered and excited for 2018.

What was most fascinating, was on the wheel, the wisdom comes OUT of the Failures.

We can only SEE the wisdom, when we take the time and space to see what didn’t work.

What is most key to this process, is a space free of judgement.

A space of love.

Do you have this?
Do you know how to create this for your Art?
Is anyone helping you with this?

That Christmas day, I had asked for a miracle, and it came.  It didn’t come in the form I expected, but as I turned over the binoculars in my hand, I was being given a new gift…one that had been sorely missing in my life.

The gift of sight.

Maybe there was a way to view this devastation and gain wisdom.  Wisdom that could lead me to action.  Lead me to a VERY different life… that wasn’t covering up pain.

In this life, the lights would illuminate everything.


OH MY GOSH!!!  He’s SO Beautiful!!

Staring in disbelief at a stunning Cooper’s Hawk just sitting in the tree above my head, I raise my binoculars to my eyes.

Taking in his long feathers, and golden stripes, I smile ear to ear.

Here, honey, take a look!

I hand my binoculars off to my man, watching his mouth open in wonder. I take in his beauty and form, and am overcome with gratitude for his presence and the love he has brought to my life.  Love I prayed for.  And my heart bursts with gratitude for this journey.

From failure to wisdom to action.

Five years later.

As my Zen teacher said to me back in 2013,
You are in the same room you were always in, but now the lights are on.

For this Holiday, I wish you the gift of sight .

Raise your binoculars.

What do you see?