Sometimes you get lucky enough to have a friend on the same path as you at the same time. As I went through my divorce ten years ago, my friend Carrie went through hers. Given that I was recovering from a lifetime of trying to heal addicts and she was a healed addict, this was a perfect match. We took turns either enlightening each other or scraping each other off the floor, depending on the day. After I moved to New York from New England in 2004, we thought that might be the demise of our friendship, but instead, it became the story of the country mouse and the city mouse, whenever either of us needed a dose of the other.
However, all good things must come to at end, and it did when Carrie left the planet due to brain cancer. She died joyfully and I'm sure she's dancing with the angels, but given that heaven is a longer commute, I needed somebody new to share this journey with.
Enter Robin. In 2006, two years after I moved to Manhattan, we met at a spiritual retreat. We bonded over the cheese plate at the opening reception. Given that she knew nobody and I knew about two other people, we discovered that we had more in common than cheddar and gruyere. She was a writer who had wanted to be an actor. I was an actor who was becoming a writer. And besides the dairy connection, we both loved something else: our kids.
The friendship grew, sometimes accidentally. I had wanted to write a solo show about my trip to India. Heading into writing class, we almost knocked into each other, both shocked and delighted to find the other there. We wrote, we performed, we bolstered each other's confidence. I went on to complete two acts and produce my solo show comedy about my sexy spiritual journey after my divorce, Hot Mama Mahatma. Not only did she become a big fan, she said it propelled her toward her divorce!
Shortly thereafter, she announced to me, "I just signed up for this pleasure class, about women living their desires. It's called the School of Womanly Arts." I stared at her and said, "I just paid for it. I'm going too." That's how we roll.
We talk, we share spiritual books, even the blogosphere! After I connected to the Huffington Post as a blogger, she joined too, and she's been prolific (and popular). We nudge each other forward, moving into our dreams. Even our dreams are similar... to empower women to find their voices and step more fully into their lives. And we're both taking it out to the world, through writing, performing, speaking and riding the tide of change, not knowing where it is leading, but excited by the journey.
And this month, while I submitted my book proposal to a major publishing house, she has a BIG deal happening in New York City. One of her dreams is becoming a reality. Her play, Scrambled Eggs, is being produced. Four years ago, the talented, Emmy-nominated television director, Matthew Penn, directed a reading of it at Berkshire Playwrights Lab. The four hundred people in the audience roared with laughter, but financially, there was no way they could bring it to New York. So one night, two years later, Robin turned to me and her roommate, Abigail Hastings, and asked, "Can we do it?" We all looked at each other and said, "YES!" It was kind of like those old Mickey Rooney/Judy Garland movies where they decide, "Let's put on a show!" Two hugely successful readings followed, with packed houses, including Meredith Viera from "The Today Show," who commented, "Scrambled Eggs is a theatrical feast for women of all ages and the men who love them".
With that kind of enthusiasm, an expanded production team was formed and my friend, Robin Amos Kahn, with her writing partner, Gary Richards, will now see their play mounted for a limited run at the Beckett Theatre. Previews begin April 23rd, and the show runs April 27th - May 11th. Besides being funny, it is poignant and illuminates our common humanity, and opening night is already sold out. I will be in the audience and at the after party, preferably near the cheese plate. If I know Robin, she'll be in that same spot. Only maybe this time, I can brag her up over the brie.