Each type of plant has its own bloom time. One of my favorite things about flowers is that they have a season - crocus and daffodils come up first where I live - they signal that spring has sprung - and then it's lights out for them until next year. Next come tulips and peonies. Then we've got foxgloves and then hardy annuals - zinnias, cosmos, snapdragons. Late in the summer dahlias start to bud and generally flower into the fall when sunflowers and chrysanthemums come up. I have one favorite but then another flower blooms and that's my new favorite! BUT, imagine if they all bloomed for a month and that was it - everybody all at once. It would stink!
I know at different points in my life I've looked around at other people and wondered why I wasn't where they were - they were blooming and I hadn't even developed my first set of leaves even though we might have started at the same time. It can make you feel confused, frustrated, less-than, all of that. And then I hear my friend Di Ana saying "compare leads to despair" - and she was right!
playing Martha Jefferson in Goodspeed Opera House's "1776" with Ronn Carroll & Peter Carey in 2007
When I moved to New York City 22 years ago I was fresh out of college and knew I wanted to be in theatre. And I got to do some wonderful shows and learn from incredible teachers - on and off-stage. But, for me, it was full of effort, a constant uphill climb that didn't seem to ever have a "break". I did shows with friends that went on to huge Broadway careers. Other friends and I would go to the same auditions and sometimes they would get callbacks and I wouldn't. I quickly began to pick myself apart and identify everything that was wrong with me and felt pressure to conform to an ideal that always felt just out of reach. Occasionally I would book a great show but then it was slow again. For a long time I didn't mind because I loved the concept of performing but after I while, I felt rudderless.
at 30 Rock doing makeup for Erin's Faces for NBC's "New York Live" with models/friends Elizabeth Stanley, George Brescia, Teresa Stephenson & Jenny Neale Baldwin in 2012
So after doing that for 11 years I prayed about it. I prayed for purpose. I prayed to be useful. And the seed for Erin's Faces was planted. I got to be the writer, the director, the lead performer, the everything. It was, and is, a ton of work but every piece of it is a piece of me. I realized a huge part of what I loved about theatre was connecting with an audience while we shared a story together. And I could do that with Erin's Faces. Listening to people - in person, over email, on our Facebook group, on Instagram, and on our podcast - hearing their experiences and sharing mine - it's like that wonderful moment when I would be onstage, blinded by light, but knowing there were people out there and we were together, building something. And that's what I feel now.
I am on the timeline I'm supposed to be on, and you are too! I'm listening and taking the human footsteps I'm led to take. And Erin's Faces will have a thrush of blooms - when we launch a new product, get a press mention, have an influencer love a particular product, send a particularly persuasive email - and then it's a little quiet. But this is what happens with every flower - it needs time to build up energy to produce something beautiful again. It's literally not possible to be blooming every single day.
It's helpful to know that, as my friend Jen Waldman would say, "the world needs what I have to give." Because it needs what each of us has to give. Every variety, every interpretation, every flower, in its own season.