Monday, July 20, 2015

JoAnn's BIG Adventure!

This country girl took off to Dallas for a weekend...
no husband, no kids, 
no looking back!

My "BIG" adventure!  Get it?

The purpose of my trip was to see a Broadway show of Pippin and reunite with my dear high school English/Drama teacher. 
I also had the added perk of meeting up with the lovely ladies pictured above. We all went to high school together, but it wasn't your typical high school experience...

Here's a little fun fact about me, I'm an orphan.  
I don't know if anyone uses that term anymore, but I grew up without parents.  My mother died when I was three and my daddy died when I was eleven.  I was placed in the guardianship of my dear aunt and uncle.  They loved me VERY much, but were up in years and really didn't want to start over with a young child.  They found a wonderful place for me to live called, 
The Masonic Home & School of Texas.

Campus of The Masonic Home &School of Texas

"The Home" as we like to call it, was a place of refuge for hundreds of kids over the years.  Everyone there had a story, and none of those stories were good.  We all came from broken homes, and sometimes we, ourselves, were broken.
But at The Masonic Home & School of Texas, we had a HOME.  
I felt more at home there than anywhere else on earth.  


God placed some mighty wonderful people there 
to take care of us all.

My old room is now an office.

And the other kids that were at The Home with me,
well, they're more like family.

We were together year round.  We lived in dorms together, ate together, went to school, played sports, got in trouble, and yes, sometimes fought like cats and dogs together!

The dinning hall

 I look back on my time there now with such emotion and love, but at the time I was there I absolutely hated it!  
On my graduation day, I vowed NEVER to come back!

And I didn't for 28 years.

Masonic Home high school

But with my dear teacher's invitation, I ventured back.
I'm so glad I did, and I wish I had done it sooner!

I thought it would be weird seeing them again, but it wasn't.  We picked right up where we left off and being with them was comfortable and easy.
Touring The Home again, not so much!
It was very emotional and sometimes overwhelming.
 It now belongs to a wonderful group called, All Church Home, and they are continuing the same work as the Masons in caring for abandoned and troubled children. 

Now for the rest of the story...

Dinner and drinks!

My sweet former teacher is now part of the theater guild in Dallas.
They provide support for the touring companies, like feeding them lunch in between shows on the weekends.  We got to help out with that and meet the cast (who are all AMAZING, by the way!!)

Mr. Colley and the cast of Pippin

I also got a brush with celebrity,
that petite lady in the white robe towards the back of the room is Adrienne Barbeau!
I served her fruit salad,
so yeah, I'm kind of a big deal
and this is my lame attempt at a "selfie" with her!

We finished off the weekend with this incredible show!
If you have a chance to see it while it's touring, you MUST.  As a matter of fact, it's coming to Houston in October and Doug promised to take me to see it again...soooo excited to share that with him!

On the long five hour drive home I had lots of time to reflect over the weekend, it was very emotional for me.  Seeing my childhood home, visiting with people who I consider family, and finally seeing Pippin...a play about a young man who is struggling to find the purpose of his life.  Pippin finds that in being ordinary, he becomes extraordinary.  
I never pursued my love of acting. 
 I just became a wife, mother, and nurse...nothing special.

But sometimes, the most ordinary things can be made doing them with the right people.

Thank you for teaching me yet another lesson, Mr. Colley!

"Rivers belong where they can ramble,
Eagles belong where they can fly.
I've got to be
where my spirit can run free!
Gotta find my corner of the sky..."
~Corner of the sky, PIPPIN


Terressa Zook said...

Hi 'Sonic Sister'. I'm class of 1980, although I left before I got to graduate with my class. My 3 brothers & I were at the home from '67 to '77. Like you, I hated living there, but now, I wish we had never left. I enjoy your blog, more power to ya. Terressa Ferguson (maiden name)

Anonymous said...

What do you mean "nothing special". Being a devoted wife, mother and Heaven knows a nurse is no small accomplishment. Given the burdens you carried through childhood, your teen years and young adulthood. You are indeed very special and most accomplished. I for one am very proud of you and love you. Nancy Sandoz