I think I hid it well, but I had an insane amount of butterflies in my stomach all day. One minute I would be completely excited, and the next minute totally nervous. Seven months ago, a high school drama teacher asked if her school could turn Thirteen Reasons Why into a play...and I said yes.
Was I crazy???
At seven in the evening, I would find out. Thankfully, the school kept me busy during the day.
I began the day in a discussion with the Seminar for Scholars group. This group meets about once a month to discuss controversial issues with guest speakers. It's been a long time since I've heard any group of adults dissect and discuss moral issues with as much openness and honesty as this group.
During the three lunch periods, I gave three presentations in the library.
And finally, after who-knows-how-many school visits I've done, I finally met someone named Hannah Baker!
After school, I walked around the beautiful downtown streets. The alternative would've been to pace back and forth in my hotel room, watching each minute pass on the digital clock.
Finally, it was six o' clock and I headed back to the school.
The halls were decked out with posters depicting the different covers of my book from around the world. From the ceilings, they hung giant cassette tapes.
And the brownies? Delicious!
And then...it was time.
I chose a seat near the middle of the audience. J-113. When the lights went down, my pulse began to race.
This was it.
For the next two hours, I sat in my chair and watched Thirteen Reasons Why brought to life on a high school stage. When the entire cast returned to the stage at the end of the show, I clearly had my answer as to whether or not I was crazy to entrust my story to these students.
No. I was nothing but honored and awed by the performance.
The staging and lighting were beautiful and extremely creative. The momentum of the story kept building, and every actor and actress fully embodied their roles. They literally brought Hannah, Clay, Tony, Jessica, Courtney, and the rest of the characters (yes, even Bryce) to life right in front of my eyes.
Many times throughout the night I kept thinking, I can not believe what I am experiencing right now.
When I was called to the stage, I took a moment to shake the hand of the actor who played Clay (in the yellow shirt) and give the actress who played Hannah a hug. She had to memorize an unbelievable amount of dialogue!
I will never forget this night.
From here on out, I will always consider this Friday the 13th as one of the luckiest days of my life.