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Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Miracle Blogger

Since Hugh is a better documentary maker than me, I'll just put this link here and let it speak for itself.

Iowa is cold, flat and windy. I miss the mountains.

Sunday, January 26, 2014


Last night was the 2nd official performance of The Miracle Worker.  We have been rehearsing for the last 4 weeks.  The director, Dr. Bernadette Sweeney, took great care in crafting every aspect of this production.  As a stage manager, I try to pay attention to detail.  It was refreshing to realize this director was paying just as much attention to those details as me.  Ber just had a baby about 6 months ago, and between the 6-month old and her 6-year old, I was overwhelmed by the mothering instincts in this woman.  The genuine feeling that we were all being taken care of by her was also a first in my stage managing career.  The whole process has been fun, focused and well...miraculous.  

Montana Repertory Theatre is just like any other theatre company in the country, in that we are struggling to keep relevant in a digital world.  Our incorporation of a large projection screen with stunning still and moving images helps bridge that gap.  Live theatre is a unique experience even with the addition of media and this show is by no means “avant garde” it’s just plain good theatre.  Crafted, rehearsed and ready.  I am extremely proud to tour our country with this show and have my name attached to it. 

Living in Missoula again has been a little like coming home, a little like being on vacation.  Thank God for Lindsay Brown who is always willing to drive me around, get manicures and listen to my tales of the day. 

My dear old friend John also showed up in town and we actually hung out like buddies for the first time in a very long time.

We haven’t even started being “on the road” yet, but I love my little tour family already and trust that together we’re going to spread some serious live theatre Helen Keller love all over this country. 

Sunday, May 12, 2013

For Mom

I have never made it a secret how much I love and appreciate my Mom.  In honor of Mother's Day, in lieu of a present I cannot afford, I decided to put down some words and make them public.

My father would argue that I was not raised by a single parent.  It's true he was around for fun things, camping, skiing, going on trips.  But the older I get, and as my own friends start to become parents, I can really understand what it takes to be a parent.  It's not a job that takes place every other weekend.  It's constant.

My Mom provided all of the constants in my life.  A home, meals, activities, encouragement, discipline, advice, support.

I am often asked where I get my self confidence.  Apparently it's unique.  Of course the answer is, me, I get my self confidence from myself.  But I wouldn't have the capacity to be self aware and self confident if I hadn't been raised to believe that I am great.  

There was never a doubt in my mind that my mother loved me for me.  She lived through all of my phases: nerdy, scared, jerk, bitch, over-controlling bitch, and I knew she loved me.  I made mistakes and pushed boundaries and I knew she still loved me.

I remember distinctly coming home from middle school one day, where I was teased about being too smart and she said, "Oh honey, they are just jealous."  She might have just been reassuring me but I took those words to heart.  My Mom said they were just jealous, I believe what my Mom says, she's right, they are just jealous.  And that stuck, from then until now and until forever.  If anyone has something critical to say about me, they are just jealous.  Of the confident person that I am and the intelligent person that I will always be.  They are all jealous.

As I got older I realized that my Mom didn't always possess the same confidence that I did.  Why didn't she stick up for herself?  Why didn't she believe that they were all just jealous?  My Mom has the same insecurities that everyone has: am I pretty enough?  Am I smart enough?  Am I good enough?

Why do I get to have all of the confidence that she sometimes lacks?  Because she's an amazing Mom that's why.

My Mom never changed her name. She is and will always be Jina Rhae Jacobson.
My Mom has worked the same job for 40+ years because she's good at it and because it was a means to support her children.

My brother and I have pursued lives of artists, and where other parents might have encouraged their children to pursue more "practical" endeavors, all my Mom did was support us.  Both emotionally and financially.

My Mom was in the front row of every show I've ever been a part of.  Including when I was on the shift crew and she yelled, "Hi Ri!!!" during the intermission of A Christmas Carol at the Denver Center.  Where I was just the girl in black changing the Scrooge bed.

My Mom listens when all I want to do is vent.  She has an insight into this business because she has listened to my every complaint, compliment and quandary.  She's a great listener.

I don't know who I would be if I didn't have my Mom.  I certainly wouldn't be the confident, secure woman I am without her.  She has shaped me into existence and for good or bad, I am here to stay.

Every time someone compliments me, or says I'm a nice person, I give credit to her, because I only learned how to be a good friend through her.  I am good at my work because she instilled a good work ethic in me and I am good at being a friend because she showed me that the friends we have are the family we make for ourselves.

Mom, I love for who I am and what I stand for, and I would not exist if it weren't for you.  You are the most beautiful, kind, thoughtful person I know and I strive every day to be more like you, or if nothing else, make you proud of who I am.  I love you unconditionally, indefinitely and forever.

Your baby,