Today is the second post highlighting a few people in our amazing 2015 cast. When I think of these three ladies I think of motherhood in many stages, because their stories encompass that. They also center around the part of motherhood that is out of our control. We have a lot of control when they are babies, and we do our best to keep them safe and raise them well but even so, we cannot always predict the outcome of their decisions or even our own.
First we have Summer Lacy!
Summer is wife to her quasi-high school sweetheart, Chris, and mama to their three wild boys, ages 7, 5 and 3. A teacher at heart, Summer readily traded her role as a professor of Communication Studies for an amazing gig as stay-at-home mom when boy#2 made his debut. Summer continues to teach, but has moved out of the college classroom and into the realm of everyday life, writing and teaching her own Bible studies. Convinced of the ability of God’s word to meet each of us right where we are, no matter where we are, Summer has a passion for sharing the unending beauty of Scripture with women in all stages and phases of life. Her blog, earlymorningmama.com, chronicles how the Gospel has intersected her own life in the most mundane and extraordinary of ways. Summer’s writing has been featured on Houston Mom’s Blog and as a part of the blog tour for Jen Hatmaker’s “Interrupted”. She and her family live in Kingwood, Texas.
I asked Summer how she found out about the show…
“Two of my friends were in the show last year. One in the Chicago show and one here in the Southeast Texas show. As soon as I heard about the show, and was introduced to the idea behind the show I thought, I would love to be a part of something like that.”
I also wanted to know why she thinks it is important to be in the show…
“I’ve always found that listening to someone’s story is the best way to get to know them. This show is about sharing your motherhood story. As a mother, I don’t just want to hear these stories, I need to hear these stories. I love being a mom. It is, much of the time, the most joy-filled and rewarding role I play. But at other times, it has been the most discouraging, heart-wrenching and isolating role I have ever played. What’s astounding is that it can actually be all those things at exactly the same time because there are no little feelings when it comes to motherhood. As a mother, somehow all your feelings become huge, magnified and over-exaggerated. So when I listened to these other women, and this man tell their stories about their mothers or becoming a mother themselves, or being a mother, and all the victories and defeats that come with that, it was like being thrown a life line. All of a sudden you realize that you are not alone in this huge, weighty undertaking of motherhood. That there are others who have gone before, there are those walking the tough road right alongside you, and there are those who are still coming after you. And for me, being reminded of that is huge. Knowing you are not alone in this thing is huge.”
I love those words and I totally agree with Summer!
Next up is Donna Gail Ellis.
Donna, a single mother, has worked in the field of criminal justice for over 30 years. She’s a proud 2nd generation Texan but quite possibly the only Texan who doesn’t care for football. She is passionate about watching baseball (her beloved Red Sox), reading, hanging at the beach, family and her friends, watching dark twisted movies, writing poetry, watching live Americana music, cooking Cajun food, and practicing amateur photography, but not necessarily in that order. She began blogging to interact with other Red Sox bloggers yet her site, “Don’t Mess With Tex”, became an avenue to write again. She has three Sayings: Believe, Never Settle and – To find yourself isn’t as hard as it may seem. Just look in the mirror, then in your heart.
Donna also told me how she found out about LTYM…
I was living in Austin at the time of the first LTYM show there. I joined a writing class and began a blog mainly because of my all my baseball web friends but the blog turned into more of a place to just write. I thought about auditioning but never quite got the courage to until I moved back to my supposedly non-creative hometown area and saw that Southeast Texas was having their OWN LTYM SHOW! I did not audition the first year but I followed and watched for the next one and this year is My Year!
And when I asked Donna what being in the show means to her she had a lot to say (but that’s okay)…
“Well, I could give the short answer but there is no short answer. I have two personal reasons for doing this show, one is my creative goals and one is overcoming my fear of what others think of my son and me.
Since moving back home against my will, I’ve wanted to do something personally and career-wise that will satisfy my creative side and passion. I am very self confident when it comes to my criminal justice career…however, my self-esteem waivers in my writing pursuits. After attending many writing classes with Dean Lofton of Austin in her Write Your Life As A Woman class and her encouragement, I am now in the planning stages of my own writing business and possibly non-profit that will have a few avenues of focus. The non-profit focus is going to be on young women who have gone through tragedy of their own doing and of others doing. I’m calling it “Writing The Wrongs” because I believe and research backs me up, that writing helps to heal. I also want to begin a writing group with other women in my community to come together to encourage writing their stories in a safe setting where bonds and friendships can be formed. The first LTYM rehearsal gave me the affirmation I need to be more confident in my goals and dreams for what I want to do creatively. Since moving back a year ago and joining a group of women who are very supportive of one another, although they all seem to come from many varied cultural and ethnic backgrounds, I am given hope about my hometown area.
Without giving my story away before the show, I’ve hidden a lot away to many new friends and some old friends who just never made a connection. I cringe sometimes reading on social media about all the mothers out there bragging on their children, grown and young. I guess you could say I am jealous and envious of their stories. But those are their stories and without My story I would not be in the show. I hope to reach others in my shoes. I hope to touch a cord in folks out there who judge. But more importantly, this is giving me the platform to TELL my story in a safe place, among friends and family that I know will stand with me and just be there for me, not against me.”
Powerful stuff people. This show is so amazing!
Tassie Kalas Hewitt is a freelance writer who delights in entertaining others with her slightly exaggerated tales of family bliss. She is a single mother of three who lives in Houston, TX and spends her days collecting embarrassing moments and her nights changing the names to protect the guilty. Check out Greek tragedies and other funny stories on her blog, Tassiewritenow.wordpress.com.
This is how Tassie found out about the show…
“As a freelance writer and single mother of three, who is guilty of threatening to write about my children without changing their names, I was delighted to discover in the Houston Writers Guild newsletter that Listen To Your Mother was accepting submissions.”
And what it means to her to be a part of it…
“It was as if the show had been designed just for me, and at the point in my life when I could appreciate it the most. With my last child filling out college applications, I reached the bittersweet end of a stage of my life I would miss terribly. Motherhood is laughter, and tears, and failure, and hope. Listen To Your Mother gives us a voice to share these experiences. I cannot imagine a more fitting way to celebrate motherhood than to showcase real stories about real women and the people they love.
Listen to your mother. You might learn something. After all, mother’s always write.”
Isn’t that the best?
How awesome is this show going to be? You have NO idea unless you come see it!
Tickets are on sale now. A portion of the ticket proceeds will benefit the Julie Rogers Gift of Life Program. We cannot wait to see you at the show on Saturday, May 9th at 7 p.m.!
A great, big thanks to our local sponsors: Divergent Theater, Whole Mothering Center, and Flora Padilla Photography.