Kelly who is a 28-year-old girl is trying to find herself in the world. She takes on different activities to enhance her life and decrease the frustration caused by her mother. Kelly and her mother really love each other but battle with each other everyday. Kelly tries to find her escape by going to Zumba fitness classes at the local New York Sports Club. Kelly and her mother do not see eye to eye and these Zumba classes take Kelly’s mind off the upset that she is having at home with her mother. Kelly puts her pent-up energy to good use in her dancing moves.
Scene I –
It is a Friday morning and Kelly wakes up to get ready for her morning Zumba fitness class. Kelly did not sleep well last night because of the disagreement her mother and her had before they went to bed. Kelly’s mind keeps going over and racing about how she wishes things could go smoother between the two of them, how life could be different, and how she needs an escape from reality. In the first scene, Kelly is in her bedroom talking and thinking to herself before she leaves her bedroom to get ready and begin her day.
(Kelly just wakes up from sleeping and sits up on the edge of her bed and begins to talk out loud about what had been going through her mind. Kelly is speaking as if she is trying to figure things out about how she can make her life better and find some understanding behind her and her mother’s relationship. )
Please forgive me for this fight, which we are about to have. Please understand that fighting sometimes is just what we do. It is Friday morning at 8:30 am and I am waking up, unlike you, my difficult, single-minded mother. You have lost your job and you sleep until 10:30 am. How can you waste that time wallowing in a mood that will only lead to the destruction of your life that will spill over into my life and cause us to resent each other.
(She starts to sing the words to Barry McGuire’s 1965 hit song “Eve of Destruction.” Those lyrics speak to the emotions of how she is feeling and help paint a clearer picture for the audience.)
But you tell me
Over and over and over again, my friend
Ah, you don’t believe
We’re on the eve
Don’t you understand what I’m tryin’ to say
Can’t you feel the fears I’m feelin’ today?
If the button is pushed, there’s no runnin’ away
There’ll be no one to save, with the world in a grave
Take a look around ya boy, it’s bound to scare ya boy
Yeah, my blood’s so mad feels like coagulatin’
I’m sitting here just contemplatin’
I can’t twist the truth, it knows no regulation.
Handful of senators don’t pass legislation
And marches alone can’t bring integration
When human respect is disintegratin’
This whole crazy world is just too frustratin’
And you tell me
Over and over and over again, my friend
Ah, you don’t believe
We’re on the eve
Mm, no no, you don’t believe
We’re on the eve
No need to get all upset cause this too shall pass. Pass away like every one of our other fights. No good and no fun is all of this. In fact, it’s terrible that we work ourselves all up and things come to this. I love you very much, and I love you too just the same. Why raise your voice and get all nasty sounding? Why do a lot of things that we do? Does all this make any bit of sense or are we simply used to this routine. Come and listen to a fight between two people that really truly do love each other but can’t seem to get it right. Get it right this time, get it right maybe the next time after that. To get it right because we are two people who really do truly love each other until the end or until these fights kills us. Leaving nothing left but two people who truly did once love each other but the fight killed them.
(Kelly paces around her bedroom trying not to trip over all the stuff that she has in her crowed bedroom. She does not want to get her room out of order or she will just have to fix it and put things back in their place again.)
That is what I was thinking about last night when I was sleeping. How someday the two people who love each other most are going to no longer have each other because the hurt simply became too much. Are there any other two people in the world who treat each other like this? The constant getting on each other for every little thing has put a wall between us. A wall that neither of us wants. The worst part is that we both want to fix the destructive parts of our lives but do not have the first clue on how to do that. We threaten each other with our words but never go through with any of those things. All night, while trying to sleep, I thought of how we could change the drama, but thinking about that started to hurt my brain and got me even more tired so I decided to put all of that out of my head and not think about it at this very moment.
(She stands up in her bedroom next to her bed and speaks now in a more frustrated tone. Kelly is also asking herself questions to see if she can put things about her life into perspective.)
Enough is enough. Maybe things will fix themselves if I do not dwell on the situation. Maybe if we keep more of a distance; but wait, I do not want any distance or do I? My mother is my friend, but unlike a friend my mother is not going to leave me for good. Friends come and go, but a mother is forever; but how long is forever? Can “forever” be taken away from us if our life was to end too soon because of the life we choose to live, or by the life that was thrown at us. Life is what each of us makes for ourselves. We choose the path that is in front of us and right now my path is full of fog. Thick fog is coving my path and causing me to not be able to see straight. Things are not clear but rather out of focus. I need to steer the car back on track somehow and in someway. It is like I am driving over the yellow line in a car and I am veering into someone else’s lane. I am veering over to the side that is not meant for me to be in. The side that will get me into an accident and maybe even killed. Will it take until I am dead to find myself and discover the person that I am meant to be. My mother who is in her early 60’s has not even found herself yet and now is willing to admit that. She has lived through many things but still is growing and is on a journey that she hopes will involve me but only if I see that life could be better for the both of us. Excuse me? That sounds like more of the philosophy of me rather than my mother. That I see a better life with my mother in it; while my mother wishes she was someone else on another planet. What planet does my mother wish she were on anyway? I think she wishes that she were on her own planet where other people did not exist. Actually, no, but she does like her quiet time with no one around. Having no one around and no human contact would make life a scary place. A place that I would not be able to survive in since I am a total people person; and that is why the fact that the struggle between my mother and I gets me so depressed.
(She stands on her bed wearing her pajamas and socks and proclaims.)
I am sick of being depressed and physically sick to my stomach from this depression. My thoughts are spinning around in my head. It is almost like my bedroom is spinning as well. Calm down, calm the heck down.
(She says the last part trying to slow her mind down and slowly gets down from standing on her bed. Curtain closes and re-opens to show that scene one just ended and that scene two is starting.)
Scene II –
Kelly leaves her bedroom to get ready for her Zumba fitness class because there is not much more time left before she has to leave to catch the bus or she will miss her class at the New York Sports Club. The gym is only a mile and a half away from her house.
(She tells herself in a stern voice while convincing herself that she has things under control.)
Stop! Just focus now on getting ready. Please do not fall off the door. I just organized my room yesterday and I do not have time at this very moment to do it again. Good, nothing fell but it almost did and that would have caused a huge mess that I am tired of fixing. My life is already a mess and so my bedroom needs to stay in order the way I put it. If things in my bedroom fall out of place then my life too will start to fall out of place. Things in life need order. There needs to be order is a person’s life for them to be able to function. Being able to function in life is key to survival.
(She brings her dance clothes into the bathroom washes her face and brushes her teeth and gets dressed and throws her dirty clothes into the hallway hamper.)
What time is it? What time does the bus come? The bus is usually early so I better get outside. Oh no, I missed the bus. I just heard it pull past my house.
(She pulls the curtains aside and looks out her bathroom window and sees the bus going by.)
Shit! Now my mother will have to give me a ride and she just woke up. I better tell her to hurry but I know this is going to cause a disagreement like usual. I better not think it will before anything actually does happen. Let me be the one who does not allow for any problems. Let me be the bigger person. Let me be the one who shows love. Let me be the one who is calm today. Let me be the one to start fresh. I know my mother will do something to throw me off and I know I will do something to throw her off as well. But for now I am going to get into my dancing mood and forget about problems and put them off until later. Later I can think about everything, later I can dwell.
(She arrives at the New York Sports club and her Zumba fitness class is about to begin in a few minutes. There is hardly any room in the class but she manages to find a spot towards the front.)
Can I keep up with all the other 40 young woman. I know I can. I have been dancing since I was six years old. I am just as good as all the rest of them and so what if I mess up on a few of the steps.
(She tries to motivate and convince herself that she will be fine and that she will do better than she did last week.)
Here we go. Ready or not here I come. No thoughts in my head to screw me up. Just the mirror, the music and me.
(The loud club dance music starts to play and the energy in the room starts to build up and everyone is getting excited.)
Life can be fun if you want it to be, fun like these dance steps. My heart is racing and my legs are moving fast to keep up with the instructor. I do not want to slow my energy down. Side to side my legs move along to the beat of the music. If only my mother could see me dancing now. Maybe she will think I am great or maybe she would not have any thoughts at all.
(She is always looking for reassurance from her mother to boost herself esteem but her mother does not always give her the feedback that she is looking for.)
My mother is not too big on compliments. She is funny that way. Even if she thinks I am great she will keep it to herself unless I directly ask her. So forget it, I know that I am a person who has great strengths; and I know that because I choose to feel good about myself today. No more unhappiness in my life because I am choosing right now to be happy no matter what.
(She looks into the big mirror that is covering the entire exercise room wall and is contemplating her self-worth.)
No matter how life tries to bring me down, I choose to be happy above everything. I am worth loving; I am worth something because God made me great!
(She looks to the side of her to see how the other woman in the class is doing with the steps.)
Why do I even bother to look at the other women in the class. We are not on the show America’s next best dancer. I feel like a star even if I will never become one. Even if my whole world comes crashing down I know that I tried. I remember a quote that I read on a website that said, “Don’t be too hard on yourself. There are plenty of people willing to do that for you. Love yourself and be proud of everything that you do. Even mistakes mean that you are trying.”
(Looking straight into the big wall-to-wall mirror again while telling her these words so that they will stick in her mind and she can actually use them in her everyday life.)
Those are words that I should really incorporate into my life. I should use that quote as the corner stone for a way to live my life. Another quote that I have read, fully agree with and that I have hanging on the wall in my bedroom states: “Let the refining and improving of your own life keep you so busy that you have little time to criticize others.” My mother and I need to fit that quote into our lives. Maybe if my mother had more going on in own her life to focus on, she would not be worrying about me so much. My mom needs to let me grow up; and at the same time, I need to allow myself to grow up. Growing up is a process that you never fully master. People are always growing and redefining themselves. So why should I feel so bad when I slip up?
(She takes a big deep breath letting out all of her stress.)
This Zumba class is really making me tired but I cannot believe that we only have 10 minutes left in the hour. I made it through the entire class once again. I need some water. Maybe I should start bring my own water bottle. I just bought a new water bottle and I did not even carry it with me today. My throat is very dry. I’ll get a drink from the water fountain as soon as the cool down song is over and the class ends.
(Instead of looking in the mirror she is now speaking directly to the audience to reassure them and herself that things will be alright.)
Someday my mom and I will get it right because we are two people who really do truly love each other until the end and we are not going to let our fights, disagreements and battles tear us down and kill us. We are going to stand tall just like I was standing tall with confidence in that Zumba fitness Class. My mother and I are on our journey; a journey that started out with two people who almost lost control but who each became their own whole person formed from the love that was buried down deep inside each of us. To get it right now, to get it right tomorrow, to get it right the next day after that or to get it right next week or even next month but just to get it right will be an amazing task to accomplish, no matter the deadline.
(Lights fade on her while she keeps thinking and talking to the audience out loud. Her emotions are beginning to calm down and her body is not as nervous.)