I wish you could be with me right now. I snuck away to the balcony of a venue I’m performing in Charlotte, NC. I’m watching the team set the stage. They use big words I don’t understand and they do techy things with cords they call cables and screens and pullies and lights and it makes me feel stupid. They tear black tape and they move speakers and they check the sound on my piano with more playing ability in their little finger than I have in my whole body. I use my hands to type words but they use their hands to make those words come alive on the stage night after night.
Before I found my way to the nosebleeds earlier today, I was surrounded by the rest of my tour team in a creative meeting. So many beautiful minds going in so many different directions, but coming together in the end for one cause, one goal. I feel certain that given a mic and a cup of coffee, any one of them could also stand up there and do a little comedy while they’re at it, but that may be asking too much.
The misconception of tour life via social media, is that it’s this one-man-show, but most of you know better. To some of you it would seem effortless. How hard could it be, right? It’s who you are. Just get up there and hold that mic and be funny and sing us a few songs. What you don’t know, probably, is that being a comedienne is not some secret career path I’ve always hoped to follow. It’s not a craft I’ve been honing for the past decade. I haven’t been hitting the comedy clubs in between nursing my children and fixing dinner. I never signed up for comedy. You did. You signed me up. You told me I could do it, so I did…and here we are.
Just a few short months ago I had to figure this thing out. Am I going to keep working my big girl job or am I going to sit across the dinner table from my daddy and tell him I’m quitting my job to do comedy full-time? Am I going to give up the only bit of security and stability I’ve ever known to take a risk based on the popularity of a few videos and some blogs?
I think that’s exactly what I’m going to do.
And so I did.
But I didn’t do it alone. Were it not for the consistent encouragement of a few close friends and family members, and now, my tour family, I would be curled up in the fetal position in the corner of a room somewhere eating checkers and talking to my imaginary friend. The fear and the weight and the responsibility is gripping and can numb your mind quicker than gin on an empty stomach, but do you know what I’m finding?
I’m finding that the payoff is greater than the risk. The possibility of failure, in my humble opinion, is way more palatable than the question of the what-if.
And the team around me that spurs me on and loves me and the behind-the-scenes-payoff as much as I love hugging necks and telling jokes is worth the ride. It takes a village and mine is strong. Fixed. Our homes are made up of bunks on a bus, but our hearts are a settlement. We are guided by the same principles. Centered. We are all of different bends and trades, but we function as a unit. We are all of equal value. Our walls are strong. We work hard and we love well and we live for justice and we fight hard for the good of the whole. We are unified. My allies – they push and they spur and they steer the ship.
My village. It takes one.
And in a world that tells us we can do all the things alone, sometimes we just need people. We need community. Cheerleaders – telling us to go after the thing and do it afraid. Lovers of the ride who tell us, “If you don’t, you’ll regret.” Motivators who say, “You’ll never know until you try.” Believers who remind, “I have faith in you.”
Friends…fans…you…who love and encourage and keep the dream alive.
Leaning in to the support doesn’t make you weak.
It makes you strong.
Life is not a one man show, and living in the shadows is not really living at all. Pushing past the insecurities and the fears and the “I can’t”s, I think you’ll find, is way more exhilarating than eating checkers.
So, what is that thing? That fear?
That belief in your gut that you want to go for.
That mountain staring you in the face begging you to climb it.
What is it?
And what’s holding you back?
Maybe it’s just simply…you.
Take your chance. Be a risk-taker. Find your like-minded village and surround yourself with people who believe in you and move you on to greatness. Find your tribe that puts a mic in your hand and pushes you out on stage with nothing but a glass of water and says, “Now, go tell some jokes.” Find those people, because they are gold. And if you can’t find your people just yet, be your own cheerleader. Tell yourself to go for it and not look back, because it will bring you life – a life that you most definitely need to be living.
26 thoughts on “IT TAKES A VILLAGE”
You’re in Charlotte?!?! Man I wish I knew this sooner. Would love to see you.
I saw you in Jax.FL no I was not the women who asked about your breast or fought over coozies, or asked for a refund because of the sound. I simply sat with my best friend and watch you and laughed. We cried a little but mostly laughed. In the end I sponsored a girl we met you and we left with t-shirts and a bracelet and a great memory. My daughters (yes 2) were working at Hooters at The Jacksonville Landing. We went over to eat before the show and you and your village went after. They were so excited to see you. Honestly they only knew it was you because of your outfit( I sent them a picture). They never spoke but they knew you made me happy that night and daily so they were in awe. They loved your pants, the red flairy ones. Thank you for what you keep it up! One thing I have learned is you cant please everyone but you sure can make them all mad!.
Perfectly put and just the reminder I needed this morning of the village I have and how much I love them all.
Thanks for making me laugh so hard, I cry. For saying things so many of us want to, but don’t, but love it when you do.
Keep on keeping on. We love you!
I am so glad I met you through, “I ain’t doing it”! You made me laugh on days that were dark. I began to look forward to the next video. I shared them with my daughter, then my Facebook friends, and finally my non Facebook friends and family. I prayed your tour would come to Nebraska. One day my daughter said, ” Mom, I got us tickets to Heather Land, she is coming to Omaha”! I never doubted your success and knew someday I would see you on stage. Thank you for taking the risk! See you soon!
PROD OF YOU
PROUD OF YOU
Sent from my iPad
This is the path God has chosen for you and he chose you because of how amazing you are!!!
My Husband and I have been fighting his AML leukemia since February and we have spent more time in the hospital than we have been out. I am his sole caregiver and on days that I just feel I cannot take any more, I go to your page and YOU lighten my heart and make me smile and laugh even on our toughest days!!!
Thank you for being YOU ❤️
Wow! Thank you for writing this. I’ve been struggling and this post and especially the last sentence really encouraged me today. Thank you for being vulnerable and sharing!
You are a strong woman and just what our world needs as a role model. You can be strong while acknowledging the many people who helped you become that way! Please keep spreading the love and I’ll keep following you and supporting you!
Awe Some advice. IBT
I’ve been there too! Thanks❤️💋
Me + You = US creating your PAUSE
Love this and loved your show in Marion, IL. You’re incredibly courageous and an inspiration. Congratulations on your success. You and your village deserve it.
I think my favorite is still The Prayer chain. I laugh so much every time I hear it. I imagine I’m in a lot of them lol.
Thanks for making us laugh!
Had the great pleasure of meeting your sweet grandmother recently while working in Humboldt, TN. She spoke so proudly of you every time I saw her!
I was “introduced” to Heather by a friend and am so glad I was! I have come to love Heather so much and enjoy her comedy because it is clean. She is funny without using bad language. I know how she feels about spending time with her kiddos while she can. Single Moms have it very hard and I wish her the very best God has to offer! I hope to see her in person someday.
I’m so stinkin happy for you! I’ve followed you since day one! I love to see GOOD people succeed! I know in my heart that you’ll always stay humble & grounded! Much positive success to you & your staff 💖
Can’t wait to meet you in person & hug your neck 💞
Heather I LOVE your story! All the hardship & brokeness you have been through is such a testimony for others struggling today. To see where you are now! My daughter is going through a divorce right now and I’m trying to push her past her fears and insecurities of life. She has been broken and shredded apart from all the hurt and pain. I want to see her be a happy survivor!!!! Love you! Keep up the great work!! 💞❤️
I needed this today. Thank you.
I needed this today. Thank you.
Thank you for taking that risk. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, your real life moments, the laughs and your experiences through your music. It’s crazy how sometimes life takes us somewhere we never dreamed about yet it took us there so naturally. Love it.
❤ So much love for this post and all that you are doing! Can't wait to see you this weekend at my friends ranch in little ol' New Meadows, Idaho. Congratulations on all your success!
❤ So much love for this post and all that you are doing! Congratulations on all your success. I'm excited to watch you Saturday at my friends ranch in little ol' New Meadows Idaho. ❤
You make my day .in all you do.
You make my day .in all you do.
Your spirit is infectious. I was at your show August 4th 2018 in Marion Illinois and I must say it was amazing. After the intermission you came out and thanked everyone for still being there. I yelled out “We love you” as loud as I could. I wanted you to hear me. And you did! You yelled back “I love you too!” You bring happiness to everyday people trying to make it through the day. I rely on those hilarious videos. I am 50 years old and raising my 4 grandchildren. Ages 5, 4, 2, and 1. I’m sure you can imagine what I’m going through. So with that being said PLEASE don’t stop doing what you do. You have a gift that is touching people. Thank you so much. Your fan Selina Thompson. P.s. I love my CD and T-shirt.