Reader, last night I did a show (which sold out thankyouverymuch), had one drink with the lovely friends that had come to see it, waved farewell to my wonderful, talented cast and crew, kissed the man I'm seeing goodbye and tottered home to bed in advance of today's 9am voice job. Although I still only got 5 hours sleep, I'm feeling pretty self-impressed. I'd also been up and out of the house by 8am that very day to do some Bikram Yoga, so now I also have aches and pains which give me a smugness boost every time they twinge (whilst simultaneously making it totally acceptable to be eating left over chocolate cake with a spoon right now). The voice job went well, and I headed straight home for an afternoon of work (both acting and resting-job related) which I did (along with a short nap and a bowl of quinoa with feta). Now I'm still working and mulling over putting on a load of laundry. I can't quite decide if I'm atrociously dull or commendably grown up.
The thing is, I didn't used to be like this. As I did online admin and planned my family weekend earlier, I remembered what the night after a show used to mean for me. When I was younger (specifically at university), it meant shots of various flavours and colours, dancing like a lunatic, smoking 40 fags in the garden with my girlfriends as we sent death rays at the boys who were pissing us off at the time (there were always a few, generally because they couldn't/wouldn't get their acts together and snog us), playing ill advised drinking games (always seeming to require a jug filled with mystery booze combinations that would end up with a rugby player's sock in it), yelling at the moon, being sick on someone's shoes and finally tottering home at 5am with someone else's jumper and cheesy chips from the local kebab shop. At that age, I was convinced that life was like a film and pithy one liners (inevitably said with a drink in one hand and a Richmond Superking Menthol in the other) would mean that I'd end up getting the guy, being remembered as a hero and building memories and...well...that was just the way one did things, wasn't it?
I remember giving someone a particularly elegant one liner about wishing him well (or something equally obnoxious), looking at him with a slight side smile, taking the drink out of his hand and sauntering off into the crowd-which would have been TOTALLY COOL had he not come over and started drunk-dancing with me (I loved it back then but I'm pretty certain we looked ridiculous). I remember sitting on stairs with friends, gazing moodily into the night as I puffed away and said things that I thought sounded Very Grown Up but now I think about it, were completely ridiculous (and mostly ripped off from old David Lynch films and episodes of Sex and The City). I remember sitting in a puddle of mud and refusing to move until I'd finished singing my song. I remember doing shots of tequilla at 5am and then falling over on the hill home, then sending a number of ill advised texts at 6am. I remember one deeply awfully sober night where I stormed out of a club in tears (never go to a club after the funeral of someone you care deeply for, no matter how much you're pleaded with. It NEVER goes well.) and then sat crying in my living room with packs of fags surrounding me (like fishes talking to Ariel or something) and all the lights off. Yes. I genuinely was TOO SAD to turn the lights on. How melodramatic is that? To be fair, it had been a sad day and I was very tired and thought I was heartbroken (I wasn't, turns out real heartbreak isn't melodramatic, it's just dreadful and sore and mind numbingly dull).
I won't say that those nights stopped at university, because they didn't. While I was at drama school they petered out (you just don't have the time or energy to get drunk when you're doing that many hours a day on top of a commute) but they came back with a bang once I did my first national tour. I even had one rather dramatic night at the beginning of this year. But since then, even when I get super drunk, I don't want to get dramatic. It's just too much. You say things you don't mean, you do things that haunt you for months afterwards and you inevitably have a cracking hangover. I've never been the type to be the crying girl at the party, but even so, I think there comes a point when you'd just rather let things lay and NOT confess undying lust to the guy who's oh so totally wrong for you, or vomit in a bush, or throw a jug of Snakebite over someone's head. It's just exhausting.
But would I change all of those dramatic, cringeworthy, messy nights of my past? Not a chance in hell. They gave me some of the best stories I have.
So Reader, may your nights of drama not be too painful in the present, but bloody hilarious in a few months time and your mornings hangover free!