There has been much in the news and in the world that creates a myriad of emotions in my heart. Emotions that are complex, layered, and strong.
And my own life contains a lot of emotions as well. Complicated, strong, hard, and numerous emotions. Emotions tied to choices I make, and those that I have had no choice in, but impact me.
This weekend a dear friend reminded me that sitting in the emotions is ok. That I don't have to figure them all out, or get over them, or shove them away. That there are times when we can sit and name our emotions. Bearing witness to what we are living in the midst of. And that is enough in that moment.
I was thankful for her words. That there are seasons to our emotions. That there is a time to sit with our emotions. A time to decided how we will act in response to the feelings and moments of our lives. A time to mourn. A time to laugh. A time to simply recognize our humanness.
This weekend I had the chance to watch the Bereishit Dance Company perform in Pittsburgh - thanks to a Christmas gift from my sister Heather. I have mixed emotions watching dance. There is the sense of frustration at how out of shape I am currently feeling. Jealously that I can't move that way. Awe at the dancers ability. Appreciation for work that often touches me. And inspiration for my own creating.
Watching this performance this weekend I felt a few strong reminders. One I remember the work I did with a small group of modern dancers in grad school. Of their grace in letting me join them and co-creating with movement and text. I loved this work. Two I thought of the beautiful ways that we can connect across cultures and languages. That art can carry truths that can reach between and connect us regardless of how different we may be. Three I was encouraged by the director who came out afterward for a short talk back. His presence in the short time I heard him reminded me again of the way I want to create. He explained the title of the company. Bereishit is the Hebrew word that is the first word in the book of Genesis and it means "in the beginning". And following that word people began to create and fill the world as well. Four exploring and new work has its place in the world. Work that creates emotions and allows us to think about our own exploration and discovery is needed and feeds my heart.
I carry so many feelings around with me. Feelings and emotions that may never have a sense of being settled in this life time. Sorrows that I don't always have answers for.
But I can be a part of this 'in the beginning'. I can be a part of this creative/creation process. I get to help choose what this world is filled with. And perhaps what I do will be a small drop in the bucket of the world.
But I get to choose.
As a creator and artist there is a struggle so often in my life with trying to pay bills and be responsible while pursuing creating. And the tension I feel in wanting to create work that doesn't always fit into already established performance boxes and how to do this with the resources I have. I have been grateful for the last few months where I've had the chance to have jobs and opportunities that have used my creativity and that have connected to art. But there is a sorrow that I hold when I am not creating and performing myself. A sense of longing. A longing for more. A longing to join those performers and explore and discover.
I don't know what is next for my performance/acting path. But this weekend I felt the encouragement and reminder that it is good to create. That my longings and desires to fill the world with stories and creations is good. That we never know where our creations will go in the world.
I'm still searching for what the next big project I will attempt will be.
What story I want to tell.
But as my friend reminded me. There are seasons. Seasons to be. Seasons to create. And seasons that create new 'in the beginnings' and new paths for our stories and the world.
So here's to this complex life we live as humans. Full of all the feelings that we hold. And the choices we make in how we create with our lives.
Below are links to the talk back I mentioned and a clip from the dances performed. Also I have been listening on repeat to Tim Be Told's Friends and Foes as I wrote today and it has been my go to music again and again. Link here: https://timbetold.bandcamp.com/album/friends-and-foes