That's What She Said

Episode 75: Visiting with Nicole Frydman of Champaign-Urbana, IL and her story, “I Broke Up to Stand Up.”

woman in black top holding microphone blue background

Nicole Fryman of Champaign-Urbana, IL That's What She Said

                                    SSPP ep. 75 NICOLE FRYDMAN

Nicole Frydman reconnects with Jenette and Kerry after appearing in the 10 year anniversary show of That's What She Said in Champaign-Urbana in February 2023. The friends share lots of memories and laughter as they learn more about Nicole's discovery that she is worth standing up for. 

ANNOUNCER 00:00 Raising women's voices. One story at a time.
Welcome to The She Said Project Podcast.

[Music: The She Said Project Podcast Theme]

We just got the thumbs up from our sound engineer, which means it's time to start another episode of The She Said Project Podcast. Welcome to our friends, our listeners. We've been doing this for a couple years now. This is Jenette Jurczyk, National Director of all things She Said here in the Illinois Public Media studios with my lovely co host
Kerry Rossow, Founder, and I still feel like a rookie. When we get the thumbs up from the sound booth. I still feel like he's encouraging me -- like you're doing great Kerry looking good,
JENETTE  00:54  You got this!
KERRY  00:55  So that I'm always thanks. And then I'm like, oh wait, it's time to start the podcast. I thought he was just encouraging me.
JENETTE  01:01  You know, we've talked to over seventy-five women now on The She Said Project Podcast, we're not babies anymore. We're growing up.
KERRY  01:07  I know I pinch myself because my favorite thing is to talk to women and hear their stories. And now we get to do it in such a fancy way. It's pretty great.
JENETTE  01:15  We're so fancy, and even fancier we've got our guest today in person in the studio, which is extra special. Welcome Nicole Frydman to our lovely podcasting studio setup here. How are you?
I'm great. Thank you so much for having me. Longtime listener, first time caller. (laughing)
KERRY  01:34  Well, and speaking of fancy, like, every time I think of your story, I think of your fancy outfit.
NICOLE  01:39 Oh, yes. Had all the sparkles. Well, that was a thing with our, our cast was the sparkles. So that was our thing. So I had to...
JENETTE  01:48  Their cast brought the the shimmy shine.
KERRY  01:50  They brought it
JENETTE  01:51  Yeah,
KERRY  01:51  For sure. It was great.
JENETTE  01:53  And so Nicole was represented on stage and her rainbow sparkles. But Nicole, you have only joined the community of Champaign-Urbana for a couple of years now. You're new-ish. But you have really taken this community by storm. I just want to say that you're out there making the world a better place each and every day.
NICOLE  02:09  Aww, thank you. That's so sweet. I you know, listen, what is time since COVID? I don't know how we talk about time anymore. (laughs) But yeah, I came down to help my sister with my niece at the very beginning of COVID. And then, as I like to say, I tumbled bass-ackwards into a life.
JENETTE  02:26  Like you do...

NICOLE  02:27  I don't know you do. I don't know how you count. Like when I moved, like what exact point you know, I was like, officially done with the pre-COVID life and then to this one, but I guess since 2020. So that's a decent amount of time now, but doesn't feel like that, right? Because COVID Just stunted everything. So I don't know, I still I feel new every day, right? People will describe things and places and stuff. And I'm just like, Okay, I'm new here. (chuckle)

JENETTE  02:54  Well, you tumbled into my life. And I said, you know, we're casting this little show called That's What She Said and I think you might have a story or two to tell. And I think I was right, because you are a phenomenal performer. And that was your background. You're a trained actress and performer you lived and worked in -- help me out here, in New York City. And,,
NICOLE  03:14  And San Francisco and Chicago. Yeah, I've been doing it since I was two years old. So it's over 45 years now that I've been on stage in some way, shape, or form and
JENETTE  03:23  which is amazing. Because you're 35
NICOLE   03:25  That's right, you've gotten that math absolutely correct.
KERRY  03:31  So that kind of background noise gives me pause because I want it to be regular women who stutter or who say 'ummm'  and just tell a story. And so I'm always sort of holding my breath of how genuine Is this gonna feel as opposed to feeling like a performance?
NICOLE  03:47  Mmm-hmm
KERRY  03:48  And man, you killed it. You just felt like it was like nobody else was in the room. Like you were just telling me that story.
NICOLE  03:53  Aww, thank you.
KERRY  03:54  And yet again, I had to eat my words. Shocking, but, but it was so beautiful. You felt approachable, and you really made everybody feel like I'm just talking to you.
NICOLE  04:03  Aww! What a  huge compliment. Thank you, Kerry. That's so.. No, you know, I think something that I think some people don't think about it this way. But that I've always thought about it this way is that when I'm performing? I'm not me. You know, I'm not. I'm not sure I'm not revealing me. I am creating a character. Right. And that's also the the technique I studied was about external technique. It wasn't the kind of internal technique some actors do, where it's all like their own personal memories. That's where I come from. So if I'm talking about me and being me and who I am, it's very different. It's very, very different. So, so I think, you know, I'm glad to hear that that's what you received as well.
KERRY  04:39  Yeah, it translated for sure. And it was clear, it was clear, which is hard to do for people sometimes, even people who are really comfortable being on the stage, but now like, oh, gulp, "like you want me to talk about me personally?" Yeah, that is really tough.
NICOLE  04:53  Yeah, that like, I mean, I think Jenette knew this that I probably wasn't going to have a lot of need around the public speaking part. right? Because of my performing background, but boy, did I need help with the writing part and the figuring out what story to tell and what what what I was going to do with this, if it was not about a character. I mean, that was where the work was for me.
JENETTE  05:12  That is the challenge and also the opportunity that we present in That's What She Said. Yes, you're comfortable on the stage. But guess what, a.) there's no script, b.) there is no character. We give you permission to talk about you and something that happened to you in your life that could be relatable to women everywhere. And that is not easy for every woman and certainly not easy for every trained actor to drop the character and just be
NICOLE  05:37  I'm great when you give me somebody else's words, let me tell you, I am freaking fantastic at that.
JENETTE  05:42  You know it, you are great with your own words. Let's be honest here. And so let's actually let's take a listen to those magical words from that magical night so that our listeners can be caught up and then we'll we'll dive a little bit deeper into what Nicole shared that night. That's What She Said on stage 2023 In our flagship community of Champaign Urbana, and Nicole joined that awesome, awesome cast on that awesome, awesome night. Let's take a listen to her story: "I Broke Up to Stand Up."

NICOLE FRYDMAN  06:08  I was 14 and I only just gotten boobs. (laughter)
 06:14  Freshman year is hard, y'all. And I had to do it in a new place with all new people. But I'm a paper person. So even though I did not want to change schools, I figured I'd be okay.
 06:26  It's important for you all to know that my mother never met a holiday decoration she didn't like, including clothing... that lights up. Yeah, she was always trying to give me some nonsense making me wear it, you know.
  06:40  But, but that year, that year, she managed to find me a Hanukkah shirt that I actually thought was kind of cute.
 06:48  Now Hanukkah had come early that year, so I'd only been at my new school a couple of months when it was time to celebrate. I was kind of excited to wear my cute new shirt and show it off to my new friends.
 06:58  But moments after I stepped onto campus, a friend grabbed my arm and pulled me into the bathroom with a worried look on her face. She said, 'Do you have another shirt to change into?'
 07:10  I was now terrified that I had ripped a hole in my shirt, and one of my brand new boobs was popping up to say hello.
 07:18  But before I even had a chance to look down to see if it was Boob A or Boob B who was showing her pretty face she continued.
 07:26  She said, 'Nobody here knows you're Jewish yet. And if you change your shirt, you can keep it that way.'
 07:33  Thing is -- she was actually trying to help. She'd lived in that community her whole life and she knew all too well how differently people would treat me with this new piece of information. Not in a good way. She was being kind to me in the very best way that she knew how. And at first I admit, I got pretty scared.
 07:55  But by that point, I'd already become quite a little activist. See, mom took me to the picket lines when our teachers union almost had to go on strike. She took me to knock doors for political candidates and to protests and rallies. And inspired by those experiences. I started a club and my junior high school called Kids Who Care and we raised money for all kinds of things like food and housing insecure people. I wrote to elected officials and I challenged school leadership on issues that matter to my fellow classmates.
 08:27  So yeah, by that standing up for what's right, even when it was scary, was not new to me.
 08:33  So right after that fear the next thought in my head was how I was definitely not going to back down in the face of that kind of bigotry. So I stomped out of that bathroom like I was on RuPaul's Drag Race trying to take home the crown! (cheering) And after all, this was far from my first interaction with anti-semitism.
 08:58  I'll never forget the bomb threats at my synagogue or the swastikas painted on its walls.
 09:04  I'll never forget the first time I saw the numbers on my grandmother's arm, and I asked her about them. She just started softly crying. And mom and dad had to take me away someplace else and distract me.
 09:17  You know growing up Jewish you always know about the Holocaust. But how do you explain to a four year old about people being branded like cattle and about your own grandmother, being one of them? Well that conversation would come a bit later, when I was a little bit older.
 09:37  So no, this wasn't new to me. And I already knew how to stand tall in the face of hate. bigotry and oppression. It's something that's been with me my entire life, either through work or volunteering or being that annoying person who posts long political rants on Facebook.
09:57  That's me. Yeah. I'd stand up.
 10:02  But something I didn't realize, until fairly recently, is that as much as I spent my whole life being vocally brave about issues, or for other people, or against inequality and oppression at large, the one thing I hadn't really done much of was stand up for me. And it's at this point, that I tell you that at 40 years old, I broke up with my stepmother.
 10:31  Going through lots of therapy, right, lots and lots of therapy, I have come to learn that the strong people, those of us who've been put through a lot, and therefore can take a lot. Sometimes we take too much. Sometimes we don't set healthy boundaries. Sometimes we let people beat us up, because they were tough, we can take it. And that was me all the time. I would quietly acquiesce, when I got put down and told about everything that was wrong with me. I would placate those around me, give in on disagreements, 'pologize, when at least there was foul to go around. But more often, when there really wasn't much on my side of things.
 11:21  I would smile. And I would nod. And I would do what I was told. And I would agree with every negative thing that got said about me. Even when I didn't think those things were negative at all. Even when I kind of liked those things about me. I made myself small. I didn't tell people about whole parts of who I am, because they knew they wouldn't accept it. I've still never actually told my stepmother that I'm queer.
 11:53  But then again, I broke up with her. And when you break up with someone, they no longer get to take up space in your life. (cheering) They no longer get the gift of knowing you much less knowing some of the most important parts about you.
 12:12  It was my birthday. And I was in a musical. And like they'd always done, dad and stepmom bought plane tickets to come see me in the show without bothering to ask if the timing of the visit worked for me. It didn't -- but wasn't standing up for myself remember?
 12:27   So instead of doing what I wanted to do for my birthday, I spent three days following them around as they did things they wanted to do. Going to the other side of town because they didn't  like my part of town. Eating where they wanted to eat. Shopping where they wanted to shop, or really me standing around while they shopped where they wanted to shop. And just giving in and making myself small in every way.
 12:50  Happy birthday to me!
 12:54  During brunch, shortly before they were to head to the airport to go home, she said to me, 'I really wish I taught you to be a more considerate person.'
 13:06  Now I don't remember what topic we were on. I don't remember the name of the restaurant. I don't remember what time it was or what I was wearing, or what the weather was like that day. But I will never, not ever in my entire life. Forget those exact words: 'I really wish I taught you to be a more considerate person.'
 13:32  And something inside me just snapped. A light switch just flipped. And in a flash, I was done.
 13:48  I was done being small. And I was done taking the hits. And I was done placating and agreeing and not standing up for myself. I think I kind of shocked the bejesus out of them when I opened my mouth. And actually didn't know that for a change what I tried for the very first time in my life to see what I really wanted to say and to stand up for me.
 14:15  Thing is it was really quite bad at it.
 14:18  I was I was really bad at it which is which is really weird. Considering how much practice I had had at standing up for things that weren't me. You wouldn't think all of that experience would come in handy, but it's different. And I was not eloquent. I was not calm, cool and collected. I was probably not making much sense.
 14:43  But But I did it.
 14:45  And then and then she tried to tell me that I had misheard her.
 14:53  And it was right then in that moment that I realized how big a shift this had been for me because I just laughed. Suddenly, it just seems so absurd that I had been taking this for decades. And then I realized I didn't have to stay there. I could just go. And a sense of freedom and lightness, washed over me.
 15:20  I got up and walked away.
 15:25  Now, if this were a movie, from that moment on, I made a take no nonsense gal who never looked back.
15:30  It's not though. It's real life.
15:32  So admittedly, my journey from that point has been in fits and starts, I am still not nearly as good at standing up for myself as I am for others that I'm working on it.
15:49  Because it's work worth doing. And I guess I finally figured out that I'm worth doing it for. (applause)
16:03  And so are you. (applause continues) ###
JENETTE  16:10  This is my biggest takeaway from Nicole's story. We found humor, which we like to do. And we found a very humorous note to start the story on, but still talking about a really difficult topic. And you were really willing to dive right in and talk about growing up Jewish in California, in your life. And I mean, I can picture you in that Hanukkah sweater. But that must have been challenging for you.
NICOLE  16:36  I mean, listen, I think that there are so many people out there who have some kind of story about a childhood hardship, where, you know, they were the butt of the joke, the target, bullied, picked on, made to feel other or outside. And I think like, you know, one of the things that was so great about this project is, you know, the way in which you help us find our stories and find the things that we can talk about, they really, as you said, can resonate with other people. And I think that was my sort of entrance into trying to tell my story was thinking about, like, what's this universal thing, and I think most people can relate to is some sort of childhood scenario in which you are meant to feel like there is something fundamentally wrong with you. And that it sets you apart from everyone else.
KERRY  17:23  I guess people can't see me nodding, my head is about to fall off my shoulders. It's like, yeah, yeah, yeah. And I think that's the thing. And I think that's what's so beautiful about telling these stories is because so many of us when that whatever the thing is, fill in the blank, it feels like I'm the only one like I am flawed, this is on me. And this person just pointed it out. And now the whole world knows. And the more we all tell these stories, you're like, Nah, Shut up, like, you know, it takes, it just sort of takes a little bit of the edge off, like, this is happening to everybody. And you're just you're just saying mean things to me, and I'm gonna move along. It's pretty powerful.
NICOLE  17:57  Yeah, it's ... (laughs) ... you know, it's one of those things, right, it's so much easier to look at things outside of you, right, and to look at things that are happening to other people, you know, and to go into defense mode. And there's something about that, whereas standing up for yourself can sometimes feel like an insurmountable challenge. There's also a component of not feeling like you're worth being stood up for. Right? That I think a lot of people and especially women, because of some some of the messaging that we are given since we start to exist and can receive messaging, right, is that, you know, perhaps we are not good enough, we are not pretty enough, we are not smart enough. We are not whatever enough. And then we start to take that in, you know, and we started to listen and believe it, and it gets harder and harder to stand up for yourself. Because you're not quite sure if you deserve to be stood up for. That's that's a hard thing to overcome.
JENETTE  17:57  I love that you share that you had been an activist, since you were I don't know, a toddler, out on picket lines, right? And that you grew up, never afraid to stand up, never afraid to stand up for what you believed in. And you got to demonstrate that. And then there was this transition to your adulthood, where maybe you forgot how to do that a little bit? Or at least, like you said, standing up for for causes standing up for others. But how is it that we forget to stand up for ourselves?
JENETTE  19:28  Yeah, why me? Why me? I hear that a lot.
KERRY  19:31  Right? There's like something that's deep down and maybe like, Okay, I can't do it for myself, but, you know, I'm either going to practice because I'm going to do it for everybody else. Or, you know, that's the only way that you can do it until you find your way to sticking up for yourself until you stand up you know, for yourself
KERRY  19:46  And it's free!
NICOLE  19:46 And literally just didn't hadn't had this epiphany before but I'm having it as we're having this conversation right now. And I'm saying like, suddenly my brain is telling me that like, oh, you know what it is? It's that like, I didn't deserve being set up for and standing up for others is one of the ways in which I can try to be a good enough person who deserves to be stood up for like, that was literally like a way for me to reach into being worthy enough, right? And so that was like feeding that need for myself. Right? And I guess I needed 40 years of it before I believed it. You know, I don't know, but this is just... listen, this is like one of the best therapy sessions I've ever had, (laughing) you know?
JENETTE  20:05  Really? I was gonna send her a bill.
KERRY  20:30  Okay, the invoice is on the way.
NICOLE  20:31  ...My insurance will be.
KERRY  20:34  I think it happens all the time, with all whatever the topic is, you know, I can be like really passionate about something and then often I'll be halfway through it, or I'll be hearing someone else's. And then I'll have that like, oh wait... like I need to do that. So I'm like nodding at somebody like Yeah, right. And then I'm like, Oh, wait, I need help in that department.
NICOLE  20:53  Oops, I feel both seen and attacked.
KERRY  20:55  Yes. Yes, I am all of the above. Yes, that is exactly it.
JENETTE  21:00  So what were some of the reactions and feedback that you got, after sharing your story from your family, from your community?
JENETTE  21:06  That is the power of sharing stories, for sure. And we're not here to throw anyone under the bus. That's not the goal here. You approached a very specific relationship in your life. But obviously, there had been so much history that led you to that moment. It wasn't just that day, right? In New York City, right? It wasn't that moment. Yeah. But the goal here is to open hearts and open minds, and help people realize, you know, it'd be amazing not just to witness people who are relating to your side of the story. But I'd be very curious how many minds were open to seeing the other side of the story? Like, oh, do I do that to people who I love and care about? Do I give them so much guidance and advice, thinking that's coming from a good place, when it's really harming them?
NICOLE  21:06  It was really touching. What was really interesting was the number of total strangers in the audience who came up and the first time there was this funny moment, someone said to me, Oh, my gash, I relate to that so much. And without even thinking my response was, I'm so sorry, you relate to that. But then it just kept happening. I mean, audience member after audience member was was sort of having this same moment with me, and it was like, oof, gut punch, that, you know, you know, and it was a tough story to tell, and then here are all these people going like, Oh, that's kinda my story too. But you know, the fact that you can reach people like that is truly life changing. So I'm really, really grateful that I got this opportunity.
NICOLE  22:39  We are always the hero of our own stories, right? That's true. No matter who you are. There's also this thing, and I didn't make this up, read a lot about it, right? Where we always think about our intent. And then we always think about other people's impact, right? So all we ever do for ourselves is like, but I meant for this to be a good thing I meant for this to be loving, I meant for this to be positive. I meant I meant I meant and and when it's other people to us, all we think about is but the impact you had was harmful, but the impact you had was harmful, but the impact you had on harmful and the reality of human relationships is that we need to add a little bit of both into both sides, right, we need to be thinking through all of our most difficult interactions from both an intent an impact standpoint for ourselves, as well as for others, right? Sometimes it's easier to give grace on the other side. But sometimes it's not so easy to allow yourself to acknowledge potential impact, even when there was no ill intent. That can be really, really hard thing to do. Right? And to acknowledge that maybe you were the harmful one in that moment. Right. So I don't know if there was anybody who, who maybe took a moment and thought about that out of my story. Wow, that'd be a gift, right? Because that wasn't what I going for, you know, or anything but but I mean, if there was, that's like, hey bonus.
JENETTE  24:01  I mean, but I'm a parent raising two girls, and it gave me pause to think, you know, am I giving them the right messaging, I think that I'm creating a world where they get to make choices and be independent and, and be all that they can be. But you know, sometimes it is worth stopping and checking yourself and going I love the way you put that. What's my intent? And what's my impact got to look at both sides. That would just blew my mind. I'm gonna use that. And I hope our listeners get that little nugget to take with them as well, because that was very valuable.
NICOLE  24:31  There are a lot smarter people than I am who've written about it intent versus impact. Check it out. If you're interested. There's more.
KERRY  24:38  For $9.99, you can have this knowledge too!
JENETTE  24:43  Like Nicole said, I think this is the best therapy session I've had in a while.
KERRY  24:47  Really. It really was because when you're talking I was thinking it's the it's yet again, it's both thing. You know, I thought, Gosh, how many times have I but I meant, right. It doesn't matter what I meant if I did harm.
NICOLE  24:58  That's right. That's absolutely right. but it's incredibly hard to do that. Right. It's so hard to do that to the other people's hard to over yourself. Yeah. Look, being a human and having relationships. Turns out, it's hard. We're all going to mess it up. Probably a lot. Grace for ourselves grace for others.
JENETTE  25:17  That is the lesson here. I'm going to take it.
KERRY  25:19  Why are you looking at me? Why does she look over at me when she said that? (laughing)
JENETTE  25:24  wink wink
KERRY  25:27  Are you listening, Kerry? Okay, okay. Okay, fine.
JENETTE  25:31  No, it's all good. I also want to celebrate for a second here. We also took advantage of Nicole's amazing talents and had her sing at the end of the show. Oh, her show was the 10 year anniversary show by the way, it was February of 2023. And That's What She Said started in 2013. So we chose to make it a bit special. And Nicole and the rest of her cast chose to sing the song Brave by Sara Bareilles or I chose it or...
NICOLE  25:55  I was gonna say -- you chose it! (laughing)
JENETTE  25:57  But I...
NICOLE  25:57  Luckily, there were multiple singers in the cast
JENETTE  26:00  It was...
NICOLE  26:00  come on let's not forget
JENETTE  26:02  It was beautiful
NICOLE  26:02  there were other voices
JENETTE  26:03  It was a beautiful ensemble, for sure. You really, yeah. You really shined and I loved it loved it loved. It gave me chills.
NICOLE  26:09 You know, listen, I hate when someone forces me to [sing] SING! No, just kidding.
KERRY  26:15  You were just waiting, waiting for the question
JENETTE  26:17  I mean there is a microphone in front of her right now. Can't stop it.
NICOLE  26:22  You just spend time long enough with me on any given day, and you're gonna hear singing, I burst into singing, I make little songs. Anytime someone says something makes me think of a song I'm singing. Like, just that's what it is. That's what that's what spending time with me is so you know, when Jenette asked, I was like, just tell me what part
KERRY  26:37  Yup, I'm in
JENETTE  26:38  That's exactly what she said, Yep. Just give me the song, give me the words. I'm in.
KERRY  26:42  I'm in.
JENETTE  26:43  And that was I mean, it was such a joy to work with you. And your whole cast. I mean, that was a very special cast, like you said they, they chose into the sparkly side of life. And they were all sequined up. But just a beautiful group of women who really did support each other. And I'm so glad you said yes, I'm so glad you got to come along. And I'm so glad we get to share your story on this platform with even more women who can benefit from this opportunity to reflect a little bit on, you know, intention and impact. And are you standing up for yourself? Like, are you believing that you're worthy to stand up for yourself today?
NICOLE  27:18  Well, that's, that's it. And I gotta say, like, I've met so many other women who have done other cities or the casts or the years or whatever it is. And it's clear to me that this is exactly the experience that everyone gets to have goes through this to build the sisterhood and to find these bonds. And, you know, some of these women I see semi regularly or regularly, we have other things in common and other stuff we see each other through. And then others the thing with these women I didn't I hadn't seen it all since the event. And then I you know, we'd run into someone literally like last week, and it's like hugs and like it's a bond, it's a lifelong bond. It just is. It's just such a special unique experience that, you know, changes you and you go through it with this core group of people. You know, I mean, Jenette knows this, because she's done theater for many years as well, like, this is what happens when you have a cast, right. But a lot of the women who do this, maybe don't have that experience, and they don't understand what it is to build that family. And how even though it's a few months of your whole life, it is a fundamental moment in your life.
KERRY  28:19  For me, I didn't do theater, but I did sports. And so I've often said the women that when we started this, we had all been on teams. And I think it's very similar to the theater world. We were used to having these built in just support and this little family that you would go through all of this hard work and supporting each other and then we grow up and then all of a sudden you're just out in the world and you don't have that built in cast or team. And that's what I think that we're all seeking out again, you know, we're all out here trying to make our way and I'm gonna burst into a cheer song. This is your cue. Oh, yeah, where everybody knows your name, but like we all are looking for that again. And that's what each cast it is beautiful to watch each cast form that bond again, and I think there it is, that's what we're really looking for.
JENETTE  29:09  Yeah, as adult women. we're recreating that experience for a brief period of time. And it does, it does stay with you just like your childhood sports teams. I'll tell you she's taught me a lot about the sports balls and I've taught Kerry...
KERRY  29:22  Well this has taken a turn ... but a lot of butts slaps, the first few butt slaps took her off guard.
JENETTE  29:26  Took me a minute
KERRY  29:26  and just frightened her...
NICOLE  29:27  Oh, that's hilarious. Yeah, we don't butt slaps in theater
KERRY  29:30  No...
NICOLE  29:30  we just hug a lot
JENETTE  29:33  We do. Yeah, and I've had to teach her..
KERRY  29:33  Yeah...
KERRY  29:33  She makes me hug...
NICOLE  29:35  There's a lot of cuddling. Just you stand next to a theater friend and you're are already arms around each other.
KERRY  29:41  And she tries.. and then I'm awkward and I start like, drooling on her shoulder. Like I don't know about this, but I can just slap your ass and we'll all call it a day.
NICOLE  29:50  Listen as long as you know each other's languages now.. (laughs)
JENETTE  29:54  That's exactly it. I start doing theater warmups and she's.. starts slapping.
NICOLE  29:58  She's doing a high five circle
JENETTE  30:01  We got this. I have to say this has been one of the most fun episodes of The She Said Project Podcast because we had Nicole right here
KERRY  30:07  Absolutely
JENETTE  30:08  making us laugh making a smile and making us think I mean what a great package is that
NICOLE  30:13  you know
JENETTE  30:14 you are the complete package, my friend
NICOLE  30:15 I try to bring all the spices (laughing) I do.
KERRY  30:19  I just bring the milkshake. (hysterical laughing)
KERRY  30:26  I love your laugh too!
NICOLE  30:28  I have a crazy laugh you either love it or you hate it – that's there's no in between with my wife Irene and many people are on the not so happy I can't be anybody but me.
KERRY  30:38  That's it
JENETTE  30:39 I love that and we don't want you to be anyone but you and same with our friends and our listeners go keep being you stand up for yourself you know share your stories find the That's What She Said near you start to That's What She Said near you. Enjoy the podcast and share it with others. We're so grateful that you were here to join us today and call thank you for being here our friends at Illinois Public Media we are so grateful and thank you for listening once again to The She Said Project Podcast
KERRY  31:05  but slaps all around


[Music: The She Said Project Podcast Theme]

ANNOUNCER 31:10 Thank you for listening to The She Said Project Podcast in partnership with Illinois Public Media. All materials contained in the podcast for the exclusive property of The She Said Project and That’s What She Said, LLC. For more information on our live shows go to [url=][/url]
This podcast was made possible with support from Carle and Health Alliance and presented by Sterling Wealth Management, empowering women to live their best lives.


JENETTE  31:56  ...and we're out
KERRY  31:57  Thank you so much Oh my gosh. We could do like hours
JENETTE  32:01 Yeah, no, that could have been a whole routine like that was fantastic.
KERRY  32:03  Oh my gosh.
NICOLE  32:04   That was my first rodeo...
JENETTE  32:06   Was it really?
NICOLE  32:08   No! (exit all laughing)


Nicole Frydman reconnects with Jenette and Kerry after appearing in the 10 year anniversary show of That's What She Said in Champaign-Urbana in February 2023. The friends share lots of memories and laughter as they learn more about Nicole's discovery that she is worth standing up for.

The She Said Project Podcast is recorded in partnership with Illinois Public Media. All materials contained in this podcast are the exclusive property of The She Said Project and That's What She Said, LLC. Learn more at