I moved to Los Angeles four and a half years ago. My body rebelled, the relationship I was in ran it's course and ended, and I feel like a completely different person now. I marvel at how much I've grown, and how much every encounter and experience I've had has contributed not only to the dream I'm pursuing, but the dream I am living.
I quit a safe survival office job six months ago. I got my W-2 from said job last week, and had to firmly stop myself from looking at that number and starting a downward spiral of questioning that decision. (Again.) It was the right decision, I know it is, and I am very happy, but the last six months have been an act of piecing together paychecks, both acting and thrival, and it has been hard.
Bonnie Gillespie always writes amazing columns over at the Actor's Voice, but this week's struck me at the perfect time. I read it yesterday, misty-eyed as the rain cleared, and knew that I was waking up to propel myself back out of my Januarial funk. Please give it a read, it's called Pick Your Hard.
And then a beautiful friend, one of the many I've found here in LA, posted this poem on my wall:
terrible with no time left
to say goodbye.
Imagine that moment
staring at the still waters
with only the brief tremor
of your body to say
you are leaving everything
and everyone you know behind.
Being far from home is hard, but you know,
at least we are exiled together.
When you open your eyes to the world
you are on your own for
the first time. No one is
even interested in saving you now
and the world steps in
to test the calm fluidity of your body
from moment to moment
as if it believed you could join
its vibrant dance
of fire and calmness and final stillness.
As if you were meant to be exactly
where you are, as if
like the dark branch of a desert river
you could flow on without a speck
of guilt and everything
everywhere would still be just as it should be.
As if your place in the world mattered
and the world could
neither speak nor hear the fullness of
its own bitter and beautiful cry
without the deep well
of your body resonating in the echo.
Knowing that it takes only
that one, terrible
word to make the circle complete,
revelation must be terrible
knowing you can
never hide your voice again.
-- David Whyte
from Fire in the Earth
©1992 Many Rivers Press
Dream. Leap. Choose. Discover. Choose again. Leap again. Dream. Don't give up. Pick your hard.
It will be hard. But it will be glorious.