The first blog post, the blank screen, the slight fear – what am I doing?!! – ok, the big fear – WHAT AM I DOING??!!
Why even do it?
My soul has been marinading lately in a sauce of personal trauma, family emergencies, prayer, fear, hope, joy, love, and a deep, deep need to connect. I’ve been thinking… thinking and thinking and singing and singing and hugging my husband and kids and thinking some more… And what I’m thinking is this: we’ve got it all wrong.
I don’t know if this is a purely American thing, or a post-Englightenment thing, or just the thing of being a daughter of a Southern political family, but I was raised to believe (and I’m not saying that my parents raised me this way, but just that this was the soil in which I was born and the culture that fed me from birth on up) that the individual is what is. Strive, compete, achieve, win, be discrete, craft your image, guard your privacy, watch your manners, don’t show your temper, be ladylike at all times, don’t be controversial. I have been told, by people I care about, “You’re on your own. Rely on yourself.” I was raised to care about family second after God and to give, give, give – give till it hurts. But don’t ask. Receive if you must, and then thank, thank, thank, but don’t ask. And then I moved to New York! The home of the cult of the self!
I’ve heard all of the American stuff – have you heard it, too? – self-made man, pulled up by his bootstraps – that kind of stuff. That ideal of individualism. That myth that we can make it on our own. The kind of stuff that negates the need for other. For each other. As though saying you needed help getting to where you are negates your achievement. As though achievement, success, is all that matters. As though success is reaching the top rung of that ladder. But no one is asking what the ladder is. And maybe there is no ladder. Maybe it’s not a ladder. Maybe it’s a net. Or a quilt.
Somehow, I think we’re all in it together.
I’m a singer. A soloist. And I think I’ve gotten it wrong somehow, some way.
We’re all in it together. And I welcome comments.
This blog is my attempt to be completely authentic. In my life, my heart, my singing. I’m going to talk here about what matters to me, as the thoughts occur. So it’s sure to include my kids, my husband, my family (who will not be named out of respect for them), living with food allergies, the act of singing, performing onstage, facing the practice room, traveling abroad to look for work, cooking, beauty, the spiritual life, God, friends, life in New York City, and on and on. But at the bottom of all of it is connection.
This is scary. No hiding.
We’re all in it together.