Happy New Year.
I am pensive.
I, as you, have resilience genes in spades. I am sure we have all experienced some pretty incredible highs in life as well as some pretty incredible lows, but I am always comforted by the ever growing documented malleable ability of the human spirit to push through despite whatever obstacle is next… I like to think that this is just part of the human condition. It’s such a vulnerable position eh? But also one that can bring much thrill and growth all wrapped into messy tumble-weeded gifts of joy and pain. Can’t have one w/o the other.
I was asked recently why I don’t talk about one of the “biggest elephants”, as they say, in the room, in these missives, that being the continued terror of the covid 19 pandemic. I have touched on it from time to time over the last year, but a deep dive has not happened bc honestly it’s just too present and is currently still taking each day and turning it on it’s head.
Being a freelancer brings a great deal of freedom but also it can instill a great deal of fear in times like this. And a mountain of complaints LOL. I dip my toes in many art corners, but it still doesn’t help to explain the amnesia some of these corners have around the precarity of freelance arts folk and their bottom line.
I am spending a lot of time right now behind the scenes trying to carefully salvage every cancellation, reschedule and postponement and it is taking so much valuable time away from just working on my craft. But it is the theme of the time period and I just hope I can come out the other end with just a few scars rather than a plethora of never ending wounds.
I don’t mind scars really… I am covered in them in theory. But each one has meaning that I wouldn’t trade for any untouched, unscathed memory. I still feel deeply blessed just to be here, doing something, and so that’s the main lead I will continue to follow despite any reminder of a possible crash to come.
Vulnerability is not all bad. With vulnerability comes reflection and vision, with vision comes impending, undeniable growth. I hope that where ever you are, you are also getting a few moments to plug into your own sense of vulnerability, reflection and vision as we move into the new year, regardless of all the rampant elephant sized fears running around in the room. Fearlessness is really the only dependable tool at our disposal.
I will complain about one thing before this missive ends however… I would like to spend more time talking about the importance of arts folks taking better care of ourselves this year. I feel deeply passionate about this. I am not, nor have ever been a part of the over romanticized, toxic substance risk filled arts person lifestyle thing. It’s gotten to the point of exhaustion in the many ways I have had to flip these kinds of generalizations directed at my person over the years, even just recently. It’s so tired you know? I am definitely no moralist, but I really value the way in which my ableist body works and has continued to work up until this point in my existence. It’s such a blessing, fought for by so many before us. I do like to challenge it, but in ways that bring extra bonus benefits that only come from dynamic movement, breath, adventure and visual awe/joy. Our arts making bodies are temples, not trash dumps, where hope goes to die. Lets finally normalize this in 2022 and every year here after. Having artsy ideas is risk adventurous enough…
As always, yours in creativity,
p.s. RIP Greg Ion Man Tate, you were there realest of the real “buddha blessed and booyah blasted, this is what she manifested…”