"I am who I am, doing what I came to do."- Audre Lorde "Eye to Eye"
Loved ones! I celebrate another week of having you in my life.
I am finally dancing. After ignoring what my body has been telling me for more than a year (that it is crucial that I do some form of dance, yoga, etc EVERY DAY) I am finally rejecting all excuses and dancing and doing yoga every morning no matter what. Whether it means dancing to a belly-dancing DVD in the small square of my office or streaming yoga instruction with headphones with a really long cord on netflix next to the couch in the living room where a friend is hosting me out of town. Every day. No excuses. No more refusing to make room in my life for what I need. Every day. And can I tell you...it is like coming out of limbo back into life.
Dance is the most healing love my body has met since water. It is truly the gift that keeps on giving, because what gift is more necessary than the ability to be present, in my body, in every experience, in the moment, in my life. As a survivor of sexual violence who has used not being present in my body as a coping mechanism, as a workaholic who has tried to make home out of the unchecked box on a to-do list craving more time to work even in the midst of celebrations and conversations, as a person whose body is criminalized and demeaned in the media as an impossible place to live, I do not take this simple sounding gift, the joy and complexity of being present in my body, in the moment for granted.
The practice of loving myself through daily dance and stretching, of granting myself a time that is for me and my body and music and the moment in the small space of my office had offered me the breakthrough I have been seeking, inviting and moving towards in these almost weekly missives to you. It is as if my purpose had moved from being a harried and passionate pursuit, beckoning me from beyond the next completed task or project, making me wish for more hours in full days into being a fully body water garment centered right on my heart, wearable, abundant and loose. I am not chasing purpose I am in purpose right in the middle of it, drinking it in and loving it all day long.
Right now, I am not blaming myself for whatever I am doing right now or wishing it was something else. This is a big deal for me because in the past I have been my own most demanding taskmaster, my own worst judge and my own most unrealistic expectant spectator. I have stood apart from myself, criticizing and judging and demanding "more brilliance! more excellence! more! more!" I have whispered to myself that no matter what miracle I make out of the day it is never enough. And now, I am not even mad at myself for that. My ancestors, our future and my community (YOU!) deserve all my rigor, by every means necessary even if it comes through an absurd internalized version of the mean cheerleading coach on glee.
But gleefully, I am now realizing that I can move beyond that version of rigor. I am realizing that I am more useful to you, that I honor my ancestors more deeply when I am fully myself. Fully present and fully grateful for the self I am being and the life I am having in this moment. Fully inviting to joy, fully in movement, fully in me, fully with you, with the multitude of love. You deserve the me who loves me enough to indulge in the meditative, worshipful, releasing practice of dance every day. You deserve the most alive version of me.
And here I am.
And there you are.
I don't know if there is something that your body or heart or spirit has been telling you that you have been putting off for later, but I invite you to move past whatever is between you and that which you KNOW you need. Come over here with me and dance!
Love and a shimmy and a shake!
p.s. If you haven't heard the Bootcamp Mixtape from the MotherOurselves weekend...here is something to dance to http://blackfeministmind.wordpress.com/2011/02/01/bootcamp-podcast-the-sounds-of-mothering-ourselves/
p.p.s. The MobileHomecoming is getting on the road this week email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you live in Louisiana, Texas, Arizona, New Mexico or California...maybe we can have a meal with you, invite you to an event or just say hi!!!! And feel free to donate! (mobilehomecoming.wordpress.com)