I got sick. Badly. I saw it coming and was hoping to escape, but alas my immune system was not as strong as I had hoped. And as usual, this is the worst time to be sick!! (Well, when is there a right time to be sick anyway!!).
I am currently in intense daily rehearsals for Three Sisters – a great opportunity working with the amazing Eve Best. Only two and half weeks of daily rehearsals then four days of performances to cover a huge Chekhov play…intense I’m telling you…not something you can miss – not to mention I have a full time job for my visa to stay in this country so had to interview and hire someone to come in and take over my job until 5pm everyday while I am in these intense rehearsals. And, of course being the anal office geek I am created a “For Zoe To Do” tray so that my boss and the newbie can leave me daily tasks to do after rehearsals into the wee hours before the day can end. Intense. AND, I am also taking part in the NYU mock trials so have in role meetings and in role preparation for the “landlord” I am portraying in the case that is ongoing each week too. Intense!! Yes, yes, yes – I am always busy so this is just a taste of what my life can be like sometimes and I usually LOVE IT!! I am not Zoe if I don’t have one million things going on at the same time J (At least, that’s what people say!!).
BUT…I saw this coming – I watched after the end of the first week of rehearsals cast members were dropping like flies around me – one, then two people out for the day, then three…and I could feel it in my throat– I went home and took all the pills I knew and had and bought (am homeopathic so natural pills!!) but I could still feel it coming. And, then I woke up with a horrible head cold, a sore throat, swollen glands, a painful cough and the inability to swallow or talk very well. How can an actor act without a voice!! GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!
I tried to fight it but could not so I thought – this is not a time to try and fight it my way without the hard drugs as I have no time, so I was about to go to the doctor when I found out from my boss that Oxford has suspended our insurance at work! GREAT!!!!!!!!!!
So, I was stuck – I took everything and anything (I even did the whole Nyquil/Dayquil thing), researched online and input all my symptoms and it came up with Viral Sore Throat which turns out if that’s what I have then it can’t even be treated with antibiotics anyway so there is no point in going to the doctor – luckily for my insurance scenario – but unlucky because online it says it can take up to two weeks to go! GREAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So, here I am, almost a week later since I felt it in my throat – still with such a bad whatever it is exactly – having to take off two days of precious rehearsal and work time (and I don’t take off time unless I can’t move) and I walk into rehearsal and do you know what Eve says to me?? She looks at me, she hugs me and says…
“Poor Masha is sick. She is. Look at what she is going through, no wonder you are so sick”
At first I thought she was joking, but no, she was being serious. She is convinced that we all got sick (and difference illnesses too) – literally the whole cast bar two people didn’t get sick – and those two people are “the more happier” of Chekhov’s characters in the play – so Eve is convinced there is a reason that this happened, is happening to us – that it’s not just the weather (even though NYC became like Russia’s snowy land all of a sudden), but it ran deeper than that – that we as actors as our characters were going through such hardship in our lives that our body is reacting to it. Eve is convinced that our bodies do not know the difference between real life and pretend life that we inhabit, which is why we have to take care of ourselves when doing challenging work with eight performances a week.
I guess I never really thought about it that way. Ever.
Can this be true? Am I sick with something that is beyond just catching it from another cast member or someone on the street or from the changing weather?
So am I sick or is it really Masha that’s sick?
Is that why it’s not going away?? Because I am not done being Masha??
Will I be sick all the way until the 22nd February!!!!!! AHHHH!!!!