Lisa A. Kramer

Author, Speaker, Theater Artist, Creativity Facilitator

A Mourning Surprise

Last night I went to see the Okoboji Summer Theatre production of MY WAY. I missed the opening night on Tuesday because I was doing a round trip drive to pick a director up in Minneapolis (3+ hours one way). I'd been looking forward to the production for a number of reasons:
  1. who doesn't like Frank Sinatra
  2. the cast was fabulous
  3. Nathan (my husband) designed the set (which was gorgeous)
  4. One of my favorite lighting designers was doing the lights.
[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="500"] Rob Doyen and Musical Director Tom Andes rehearse for the production. (Image from the Okoboji Summer Theatre)[/caption]

As I expected the production was delightful. Music, charm, fabulous singing, beautiful costumes, men in tuxes, a little schmaltz, a little cheese. A delightful evening, without too many surprises for me (although plenty of surprises for the audience, you have to remember I'm in the know about these shows for the most part).

[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="640"] Nathan's fabulous set.[/caption]

However, I did get a surprise. The final song is, of course, My Way sung by Roby Doyen (pictured above) who has an amazing voice. As soon as the first words came out of his mouth I found myself sobbing as an image of my Dad popped into my brain. Tears pouring down my face, trying not to snort as mucus fills my nose, 100% sobbing.

I'm not even sure what triggered it. I mean, I know Dad liked Sinatra and all, but it wasn't like we sat and listened to his music together all the time. Perhaps it was simply the lyrics combined with Rob's magical voice.
And now, the end is here And so I face the final curtain My friend, I'll say it clear I'll state my case, of which I'm certain I've lived a life that's full I traveled each and ev'ry highway And more, much more than this, I did it my way
All I know is I sobbed and sobbed and sobbed, beyond the final standing ovation and walking out of the theatre.

I miss my Dad, and that hasn't changed.

[caption id="attachment_6883" align="aligncenter" width="960"]Dad and I doing it our own way on a camping trip long ago. Dad and I doing it our own way on a camping trip long ago.[/caption]

Mourning sneaks up on you when you least expect it.

This morning, I thought I had my emotions under control until I read a post written by my fabulous blogging buddy, Jamie, called "Imagine". While Jamie's post has nothing to do with Sinatra or Dad, it is a poignant reminder of how important it is to embrace life fully and hold the ones we love close. This time I couldn't hide my tears in the darkness of the theatre, since I am back in the coffee shop. Sigh.

Lesson learned, live life, love life, hold people close and do it "my way"