Quote of the Day: I think you’re supposed to cry when you’re all alone in a dark room. That’s what I think. And I think your mom or dad – or someone who loves you – is supposed to come help you. Lina’s line in Cry It Out, A biting comedy about babies, motherhood, and all the messiness and angst that goes with it, by Molly Smith Metzler, directed by Angela Timberman, on stage now at Yellow Tree Theatre in Osseo, MN through Mother’s Day, May 12, 2019.

Taous Claire Khazem, and Katie Consamus in Cry It Out at Yellow Tree Theatre. Photo by Justin Cox

Prepare yourself for about 90 minutes of laughter, angst, wistful moments, and lots of coffee when you go to Cry It Out at Yellow Tree Theatre. Jessie (Taous Claire Khazem) and Lina (Katie Consamus) are new moms and next door neighbors. They start meeting on Jessie’s deck to talk about parenthood and all the ups and downs that go with it. They talk about staying home vs. working. They worry about daycare, breastfeeding, baby monitors, the in-laws, and story time at the library. The dialogue is witty, and the delivery is sharp and realistic. Jessie and Lina bond over motherhood. Their ease and interaction made me feel like I’m one of their friends joining in on mommy time conversations.

Matt Wall and Taous Claire Khazem in Cry It Out at Yellow Tree Theatre. Photo by Justin Cox

Another set of parents are in the same neighborhood. Mitchell (Matt Wall) and Adrienne (Audrey Park) have a beautiful baby boy, one that they longed for and needed modern medicine to have. Mitchell wants his wife to have what Jessie and Lina have. He wants her to be more “traditional,” so he sets up a “play date” for her to bond with other mothers. That backfires, and leaves everybody feeling bad. In the end, it’s Mitchell who longs for the connection. The question of “To work, or not to work” once you have kids is at the center of the play. Along with that is maintaining your own identity and fulfilling your need to be a good parent.

Audrey Park, Taous Claire Khazem, and Katie Consamus in Cry It Out at Yellow Tree Theatre. Photo by Justin Cox

I attended this play with a good friend. We’re both mothers and have raised our kids who are about the same age. She said, “This would have been a good play to see when we had small children.” Yes, but it was also good as they’re leaving the nest. I had flashbacks to when they were young. I had many of the emotions and situations brought up in this play, and I felt affirmations and a bit of longing for their younger days. It’s a constant struggle finding the balance of parenting, meeting the needs of your child, and pursuing your own interests and career. 

This is a beautifully written play with heart and humor. The actors are brilliant, and the set feels like our own backyards. Set by Joel Sass. Costumes by Ash M. Kaun. Sound by Montana Johnson, and Lighting by Courtney Schmitz. Angela Timberman has brought out all the emotions wrapped up in a baby bunting that we bring home without instructions and holds all our hopes and dreams. I hear tickets are selling fast for this one. See it before it closes on Mother’s Day. I had a great time at Yellow Tree Theatre and plan to return for more great theater experiences next season!

Go. Create. Inspire!

Journaling Prompt: As a parent, what were/are your main struggles? Did you ever have a great neighbor who you could drop in on, have coffee with, borrow a cup a sugar, or call in the middle of the night to ask, “What was that weird noise in the neighborhood?” (miss you, Lisa)