Befriending the Fear

This morning I moved to my new place, Ivuka Art Center and for some reason I feel very nervous about it.  Partly because the house I was living in was so beautiful and I wanted to stay, the young women I lived with were great and we got along very well, and it was close to Justin and a familiar area of the city. Now I am in an art center where there are people around all the time, doing art, drumming and hanging out. This does not offer me much in terms of quite time or space. On the positive Charles, the young man that lives here as well is very kind and included me right away in his daily life by inviting me to dinner and to bring me left overs. There is also a brand new, tiny puppy named Happy and a kitty named Chloe who like to curl up together in a small box and sleep, when they are not wrestling or biting feet!

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(Chloe, Happy and Me!)

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(Charles)

Justin picked me up this morning and drove me over with my stuff. It is not far from where I was and it is another familiar location in the city, I am the next block down from Inema Art Center. I did begin to settle in quickly and heard my mind saying, “I feel at home here, like I can settle in.” I have a room to myself with a new bed, my new painting on the wall, a small bed side table and a stand up armor with room for about 10 hangers. It’s all I need. So what was it that made my stomach up set this morning as I prepared to go?

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(The Studio)

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(My room)

I recently have been forming a nice relationship with the young girl Alex who lives at my old house. I feel kind of like a big sister in a way and this week when she was sick I was more than happy to stay a few extra days at the other house to make sure she was ok. I am enjoying spending time with woman and have had a great imbalance of that in my life so these new experiences of living with a group of woman has proven to be very powerful.  I feel it was exactly what I needed to help me embrace certain parts of myself over the last 3 weeks including my new hair, my steps into teaching Thriller and doing more writing.

But this is not what is making me physically upset or nervous. Right now I feel like it is fear presenting itself to me, fear of taking myself more seriously as an artist, a dancer, the person I am growing into. This feels like a big step into being who I am and so it is natural for me to react this way as I know it is what my body does.

Today when I was showing Justin around I found the hoola hoop that I saw when I came to look at the room, it was made by a young American woman who lives in the other house on the property. I have been wanting to make one and show Justin what hooping is since I arrived and now was my opportunity. He had never seen anything like it before. He was intrigued and wanted to learn. I have had ideas of making them here and decorating them with African fabrics. I want to take them out to the villages and co-operatives that World Dance and Justin work with. I feel that it would be very beneficial to them as a form of entertainment, dance, expression, exercise and fun! Justin thinks it is a great idea and he wants one right away! So I have created a new project for myself called “Love Hoop Rwanda” and we will be buying supplies on Wednesday this week!

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(Justin is a fast learner and had it moving in no time!)

So here it is another way for one of my skills to become much more than I had ever imagined it could be. I am living in an art center surrounded by inspiration, dedication and commitment to creative life. I am here. I arrived and now I will give myself time to settle in and see what else there is awaiting me here. Can it be as simple as making hoops that I could use to spread joy and love?  Can it be as simple as doing an art project? Can I be here teaching dance and hosting an event? Is this my life? It is everything I thought it could be and somehow it seems too simple and so rich at the same time. I feel like it needs to be more difficult than this, which comes from being shown that life is difficult and work equals unhappiness by the people around me and society. I know that I have done the hard work and that now is the time to reap the benefits, of course it will feel easier than before but it is by no means easy. Passions are not meant to be easy, actually the word itself in regards to work for me means bearing my soul and that hasn’t been an easy thing in the past and it takes practice. I have the skills, the confidence is there I just need to put myself into situations that push me further and this is one of them.

Alex, my old roommate, will be leaving September 20th which is earlier than expected and so her room is available to rent  sooner than I thought. It feels like an escape route, like a way out of the challenge and in other ways it feels like where I want to be but this is me during transition, once again, and I have to really embrace what I have been given here at Ivuka before I decided anything further. This space was handed to me and I intend to explore it. Seeing that it has already presented me with a new potential area for growth and change with Hooping, I am willing to stay put and see what else will be revealed.

I am so grateful for my ability to face fear and all of its sneaky hats that attempt to veer me from my path. It is the only way I get to see my courage, my strength and my potential truly unfold. Thank you Fear!

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