I made it up to Buffalo, Ny this weekend to see my sweetheart this week. Today, the return trip, 7hrs of driving and many episodes of Radiolab later I now am sitting in this quiet studio organizing work for the next few weeks. First, if you haven’t checked out RADIOLAB podcasts, give them a try!
Tomorrow I will be heading out with a large truck to the land of NYC. I sha’ll tote the works of Marlene Rye.
(Below is a clipping from a larger painting)
In her work I see beautiful revelries of play, nature and color.
I’m a bit nervous to take to the highways of the formidable NYC traffic monster tomorrow. It’ll be nice to hang with some lovely folks in Brooklyn. After getting fired from Gravity Switch minutes after hearing some bad news, and still in the middle of some health issues, I was shook up. Then, I had some good days of reconnecting to these people I love and learning to remember gentleness.
But really, this was a rut. It is not awesome to be fired. It is really not awesome for it to happen the week after you got really good feedback in your monthly check-in. It is super-duper not great to be called a liar as well for god knows what. My head was spinning. I just watched, like some out of body experience as this person spoke circles around me. I felt so stupid. In the end, he wanted to give a hug. I had no idea what I had gotten myself into with that job. I felt duped. I did come away, though frazzeled, with a better understanding of myself and vision for the kind of life I want would entail doing. That’s an amazing blessing to not feel ultimately helpless.
It was amazing to have the opportunity to share my shame with others and be embraced. It was also something somewhat spectacular to watch the community swell up around a love one of mine whose mother had passed that day as well. I got the chance to focus on being with my community and watch their incredible hearts unfold to support this fucking fantastic person who is deeply hurting from the passing of their mother.
I have doubts about my strength often. In the past week, I have seen a glimpse of how strength manifests through this woman. Her constant courage to still love that which hurts her deeply, to still say that the ugly things still deserve to be loved and through that act of love, cultivate something I still haven’t quite wrapped my head around. I also feel blessed to witness those people who provide spaces in which others are safe to acknowledge and grieve Life’s death and suffering.
We surrounded ourselves with flowers. We reached high to the willow branches to watch their spring petals rain and stick to our eyelashes. We indulged in chicken wings and beer. We drank bloody marys and cried. We laughed. I sucked in so much air that my belly hurt. We cried again. We let the sun see our faces and our bare skin on blankets in the grass and drank too many coronas. We talked. We did yoga and made breakfast. We tried to ride a motorcycle….that didn’t work out too well. We took to the old fashioned bikes and had breakfast in a garden. I saw C do a mean snot rocket. At the end of the week we sat in silent meditation for Wendy as the sun dappled, white linen curtains gently danced on the spring breeze and listened to Tibetan prayer. Wendy who brought this spectacular beauty into this world with an enormous heart and ear for the people around her.
Next week, I’ll head to the studio and start the engines, this artist has been itching to do her thang for quite a few months, and I’m excited to get to work on some of these commissions that have been patiently waiting here in the Arts & Industry Building. But then, I’ll tidy up and sail out to Hotlanta, USA to help organize the precious objects of a wonderous collector of folk art and help turn over her treasures. I hope to post pictures of this within the next month.
image by Elly MacKay. You can buy her work on Etsy.