Sunday, February 14, 2010

Just for LOVE

yesterday was "just for love," the circus benefit show that my friends put on for me at NECCA. and wow, i have tried several times now to write the story of yesterday, and i am still so overwhelmed by it all that i'm having trouble finding adequate words to explain how amazing it was. i felt loved in a way i've never felt loved before. between the audience, the show's performers, producers, directors, backstage people, volunteers, etc., there were approximately 300+ people there...all to support ME... and i... i don't even have words for how amazing that is. just writing about it is making me cry all over again! the audience of hundreds included my mom, dad, stepmom, stepdad, brother, sister-in-law, niece, aunt, uncle, and numerous friends, some of whom i hadn't seen in a long time, some who drove a long ways to get to the show, and i was so touched.

the performances were awesome! there was tightwire, solo trapeze, duo trapeze, chains, diablo, hooping, contortion, straps, dance, clowning, lyra, and juggling! i loved it all, and so appreciate the generosity of all of these performers who put so much time, work, and heart into the show. then came the finale - i was so surprised when the entire cast performed the pink glove dance!! the moment the music started, and the gloves came out, and i realized what was happening, i started bawling.

i have watched the pink glove dance video SO many times on youtube, especially when i'm having blue moments and need something uplifting, because the energy and optimism of that video is so infectious - hundreds of people dancing to "you won't be lonely, even when the sky is falling down"'s such a comfort and reassurance to those of us who are dealing with breast cancer. so to have a room full of friends and family and people i love sing & dance to that song just for ME... WOW. in the middle of it, deena came to pull me up on stage to join them, and i was crying and laughing at the same time, trying to dance with her but mostly stumbling around like a dork because i was just so overwhelmed i could barely breathe. then lots more people from the audience came up to dance with us, too, and there was a whole sea of people hugging me and kissing me, dancing with me, picking me up and spinning me in circles, and i was just speechless with a pounding heart, soaking it all up.

it was truly one of the best days of my entire life. definitely the best valentine's day EVER!! okay, so it was the night before valentine's day... but our after-party lasted past midnight, and when someone noticed that it was officially valentine's day, we all toasted. i have always loved valentine's day, despite always being technically single, because i love the idea of a whole day devoted to love. it frustrates me when it is narrowly seen as a day for couples, because really it is a day to celebrate love in ALL of its forms - love for family, friends, your self, community, children, animals, nature, chocolate, god(dess)/spirit/etc. for those who believe, the world, and love itself. i get sad when the media/society presents this false dichotomy of either celebrating valentine's day because you're in a romantic relationship with someone or being bitter and snarky and anti-valentine's day because you're single. valentine's day (and life!) is about so much MORE than that!! i am very rarely in a romantic relationship, but i don't consider myself "single," and certainly not lonely, and my "love life" is not lacking. yesterday is the definition of my full and satisfying love life!! i LOVE my family and friends and community SO much!! during the pink glove dance, when we were all clustered together and so hyper, jumping up and down, dancing, hugging, someone yelled, "WE LOVE YOU, BRITTA!" and i couldn't see them and don't even know who it was, but i yelled back into the crowd, "I LOVE YOU, TOO!!" and it was just beautiful and perfect. i kept on dancing, and in one hand, i had the bouquet of beautiful flowers that deena had presented me with, and in the other, i was holding the valentine i had made for everyone way up high - a big red heart that said "thank you so much, NECCA, friends, and family! love, britta." i hung it on the wall of the studio when the show was over. i was carrying my 2-year-old friend ruby around (deena & danny's daughter), and she asked me about the valentine, so i read it to her and explained that i had made it for all of my friends and people i love. she smiled. "for me? and mama, and papa, and aimee?" i said yes, for her, and her mama and papa, and aimee, and all of those people who were out there dancing, and all of our other friends who couldn't make it to the show but were there in spirit... ruby looked at the valentine some more and asked, "where's my name? where's R-U-B-Y?" :) i explained that i didn't have enough room on the heart to write everybody's name, but that it says "thank you, friends," and ruby is my friend, so that includes her. and i hope everyone knows that although i did not have room on that paper heart to write everyone's name, all of their names ARE on there, and all of their love is inside my real heart... my heart that is SO SO full of everyone's love and joy and healing energy. and you know, my heart is mere inches away from where that cancerous tumor was in my left breast...and the cancer doesn't stand a CHANCE against all of the love that my heart and whole being is flooded with.

- amanda and henry, for creating/organizing/producing the show
- all of the performers, especially deena, for performing right to me and hugging me at the end
- all of the people working backstage and all of the tech people
- all of the volunteers, doing box office, concessions, house managing, decorating, and stuff i don't even know about
- the people who stayed past 10 pm to clean the studio up
- everyone in the audience, for your energy and financial support
- the person who spent his morning driving all over western MA to find the pink gloves, and the people who did other things like this that i'm not even aware of
- everyone who donated money
- the winning bidders during the mid-show auctions, and all of the bidders
- everyone who shared a piece of their heart
- my family & friends for coming to the show and supporting me yesterday and always
- my friends & family who couldn't make it to the show but are always in my heart
- elsie & serenity and ALL of NECCA
- the universe
- you reading this


  1. Me too.

    Britta, we love you so much!!!!


  2. It was an incredible night. And it all happened because of how wonderful you are, Britta.

    How much did you raise? I'm so curious!!! My guess is around $5,000.

    Love you

  3. thanks, amanda, margot, sue!!

    sue, i don't know how much money the shows raised!! after the first show, i went to the box office table to get my jacket and bag and head home for dinner, and someone just thrust the huge wad of cash at me, saying "here!" - and i burst into tears again and couldn't take it!!! oh, man!! so now someone is going to put all the money from both shows together and then i will get it. it's strange, sometimes i forgot all about the money aspect of the show - i was just so caught up in the joy of being in that sea of love! the dancing, singing, hugging, laughing, crying! and then i'd remember, oh yeah, all of this love AND ALSO money so that i can still pay bills and rent when cancer treatments prevent me from working, WOW, this is incredible.

  4. this is beautiful! thank you for sharing it! xoxoxox


  5. the show was super magical... & you deserve every second of the love & emotion that was surging through that room <3

  6. sorry for trying to hand you all that money, Britta! i did it in a spirit of joy and gratitude and because of all the goodness it will bring to you! love you! Cathryn

  7. oh, cathryn, i know!! no need to be sorry! :) it's just me and my money issues, you know?? :)

  8. Sorry I missed the show, I was away. I wanted to be there so badly, though! Is there a tape available somewhere?

    What did you decide for your treatment? I see you're doing a lot of diet and exercise related tx, what was the conclusion on mastectomy/chemo/radiation/etc?

    Keep in touch! I hope to be up in Brattleboro next week (I broke my R big toe and haven't been able to drive) and maybe we can arrange that mocha date.

    Much love,

  9. thanks, cora and andee! xoxoxox!

    myrtle, i don't know if there's video available...i sure hope so! and in terms of next steps, i haven't made any decisions yet. i'm being a major nerd and making flowcharts of my options/the timeline. :)

    so sorry about your toe!! :( i wondered what was up! (just saw some note on FB about you not driving). would love to see you, if the timing works out.

  10. Britta,

    I wish there was more of this kind of support for people in the world. It is so easy to do. i am especially glad that you are so open with your feelings. That in itself is going to help you whatever you go through. Being being able to express how you really feel helps your body heal!
    You know Elsie and Serenity did this for me 3 years ago when I had the detached retina and no health insurance. they didn't publicize it, but it made a huge difference in my life, and I make a point of being grateful to them.

  11. anonymous, thank you, but who are you?? (or did you mean to be anonymous?)