“The best thing you can do for an artist is hire them.”
(Jo Boobs? Cass King? I swear it was one of those power pussies!)
My reflections, as the last day of the year is upon us, turn inward. I kept thinking I would have more time to write about the immense fulfillment the last year has brought me. How I’ve been moved multiple times by kindness and generosity. How being bestowed with opportunities in my industry have moved me to tears. How the balance of performing / traveling / teaching and training exhausted me, but in the same breath invigorated me. How I was able to become more deeply connected to those I know and was given space to encompass so many more new relationships. How being part of an industry that is thick with art, beauty, creativity and glamour doesn’t come without struggle, friction, uncertainty and heartache. How each one of us carries stories of triumph and failure. How we can judge ourselves and each other – you can always do better, do more, someone is always doing more and doing it better.
In the past year I’ve been on 42 airplanes, traveling and performing within 5 counties and many, many towns and cities. A little piece of me simultaneously dies with gratitude and is then reborn in joy when someone wants to pay me to fly across the country and take off my clothes. This is what I’ve worked for, it’s what all the effort and struggle leads up too. Being able to pull from my body of work creations that translate to audiences far and wide is amazing. What it doesn’t allow for is the deep creation of the new. In an industry and age where we all want and seek the next big, shiny, fully rhinestoned creation, it can do your head’n’heart in a little bit. I’ve given this some thought and I’ve given it some feels.
What I have come up with, or more to the point, come back to is – Trust. Trust in the fact that you are enough and you are doing it. That not everything that matters and adds up, needs to be “epic” and “grand”. That by being present in your work, whatever that may be, is what you need to be doing. My focus has been: keeping up with myself, leaving room to be present on the stages I am invited to be on, to be my best, fullest self, to show up for the audience, my fellow performers, the producers that hire me and the students that show up in my classes. My focus has also been to maintain my health and energy by giving myself space to rejuvenate and focus on what gives me light. That might not be creating the next big act, that might be learning a new skill like flipping upside-down on a pole, that might be researching skin care, that might be setting an intention to visit the ocean once a week. We all have something that grounds us, and it might not be about the stage. And that’s ok, it still counts. In fact, it counts more than you might value.
This small reflection is not meant to be about the struggle, we all know it’s real. It comes in various forms on different days to all of us – arty stripper weirdos or not. This post is about the deep, staggering appreciation I have been left with after this year; the full, tipping to the brim heart I can sip from; the potent, saturated skin I allow my sighs to escape. My reflections are because of those in my life that I love and that love me back. It is because of those I love deeply and intimately and those I love back with only a double tap <3 , as we might be worlds apart. I’m graciously bowing to every opportunity given, every kind word shared, ever door opened and bed offered, every roaring applause, every speck of feedback, every stumble, every belly laugh, every “yes you can”, every too-long of hug, every thank you, every space held, every inspiration you gave me just by being yourself, every honest sharing. Sometimes all I’m left with is thank you.
So thank you, thank you, thank you. Happy New Years Lovers – may your seeds of intention grow so immense you have to plant a new f*cking garden, may your river overflow, may your harvest feed the stars.