I'm actually surprised at how sad I am.
This season (starting with the school year) is my fourth with Sac Choral, and until a few weeks ago, I've never missed a concert. Of course, a few weeks ago, I had pink eye and anxiety--sitting out was just what I needed. Still, I didn't like doing it.
And now, I'm sitting out again.
I went to the first rehearsal for Home For the Holidays three weeks ago, excited to get to the Christmas music. While I love singing all concerts, this one is a favorite--a wonderful time of year, great music, and tons of tradition. We sing it in Memorial Auditorium, right in the middle of downtown Sacramento--it's an institution in the city.
In that first week for this concert, Don mentioned the absence policy--miss two rehearsals, and you can't sing the concert, he reminded us. This is nothing new...but this was: "And if you miss any dress rehearsal, don't plan on singing."
My heart sank. We have two dress rehearsals for Home For the Holidays--Friday evening and Saturday afternoon. Friday evening happens to also be one of my two Winter Concert evenings at the Large Suburban High School. This same conflict happened last year, and there were no problems. I missed the Friday rehearsal, but caught up quickly on Saturday. This year, however, Don has to tighten up on these mandates, because someone recently tried to take advantage of the absence policy and got really upset when he held them to it. So yesterday, when I emailed him about my dilemma, he told me I'll have to sit this one out. I'm actually being put on the "inactive list."
And yes, I'm really, really sad about it.
Oh, there's some good. The concert is the same day as a Christmas Cookie Exchange that Mom and I are invited to, so now I get to find a fabulous recipe and go eat cookies. (I'm leaning towards these super-easy but very cute Grinch Crinkle Cookies.) And while the holiday season heats up, I won't be spending my Monday evenings driving all the way to Sacramento (it's a 45-minute drive for me), getting home late, etc. But still, I feel kind of like I've been kicked out of choir--which isn't remotely true. Don even said, "I'll expect you back on January 5th."
I just can't help feeling like I'm being penalized for my job--a choir director--by another choir director, simply because other people missed too many rehearsals and got pissy when they weren't allowed in a concert.
I suppose it's also good that instead now of three harried nights of choral performances in a row, I'll only have two (and then cookies!). But I didn't really mind last year, especially knowing that I could sleep late on Sunday and that even the following school week--Finals Week--would be really easy. Once the Winter Concert is over, Choir doesn't do a whole lot.
At this rate, I probably won't go to the concert. If I can't be in it, I don't really feel like sitting out there--while the concert will be wonderful, I'll just be thinking the whole time that I ought to be up there, not sitting in the audience. Mom and I will go to our cookie exchange to eat cookies and sip champagne, and come home that evening to relax. I'll likely feel a little bit lost; after all, I'm a singer, it's what I do.