20 years ago this month, I became active with a local all-volunteer theatre organization. I loved this group tremendously, and they shaped the person I am today. I won their scholarship when I was a senior in high school, and when I returned home after college I immediately began volunteering with them again, in many different capacities: actor, director, set design, painting, teacher, scholarship chair, tech meals coordinator, etc.

Many of the same people are still involved, and though they mean well, there is a specific faction of them that is tearing the organization apart. It is no longer what it was, and I feel like something has been stolen from my childhood.

I have three options.

  1. I can stay on the board of the organization and accept things the way they are;
  2. I can stay on the board of the organization and try to change things; or
  3. I can resign my position and let this chapter of my life end.

My heart is voting for #2, but my sanity is leaning towards #3. I just wish there were a clear answer… To stay and work towards a change would be a huge effort and emotional commitment, and I wonder if I’m at a good place in my life for that. But to leave? I want this organization to be there for my children, and it won’t survive what’s happening to it. I don’t think it will, anyway — not and be any recognizable version of what it once was. I don’t expect it to be the same, but I’d hate for it to be run like an adult theatre group. It’s not an adult theatre group.

And it’s dying. I’m very sad today.

5 thoughts on “Splinter”

  1. It’s been dying for a while now. Disasters don’t all happen in an instant, and slow disasters are still disasters.

    As it stands now, this chapter of your life got boring and lost the reader several pages back.

    If you quit, then there’s another slot for them to stuff. Not that you (or anyone else) being there has stopped them from doing what they want anyway.

    Perhaps you could stay and try and help things WITHOUT the emotional roller coaster? You’ll think better when you’re not upset.

  2. That’s what I’m thinking. If I do choose to resign, I’ll write the letter in a few days and sit on it for a month before next meeting. And then when I go to the meeting, I’ll read it myself, since they seem to pick and choose whose letters to read.

    But if I don’t resign, I’ll do my damnedest to make a difference.

    Option #1 isn’t even an option. Either shit or get off the pot, baby, but I’m not going to sit back and let stuff happen anymore.

  3. I don’t know that they truly pick and choose which letters to read aloud in the meetings. I think they are just too disorganized to be consistent. There’s no reason for them to have NOT read my letter, as it was friendly at best and simply professional at worst, as it contained no harsh language at all.

    Also, be careful what you post online. You never know who is reading, and security through obscurity is only barely different than no security at all.

  4. You know Elaine, I know exactly what you’re talking about. Before having children, I always opted for #2, and then took a wait and see attitude. But kids make me so tired, so I don’t have the energy for #2 any more. It’s a tough call. Good luck.

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