We're All Mad Here.
A new month. A new feeling. A new focus.
“It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.” -Lewis Carrol
I wake up on this February morning frazzled. I forgot to set an alarm, which meant I slept through my morning movement class. Not a big deal, except it's the first one of the new month. Not ideal to miss it. I know my teacher is understanding, but it leaves me with this feeling of slack; like I failed myself. Like I started the new month on the wrong foot. But I'm going to accept it happened for a reason. And here's why. Perhaps I just needed the rest. Perhaps I was meant to be home this morning. This week has been an intense one for me. I have showed up and put myself in some very daunting and new experiences. If you've been following along, I had a very big and new type of audition at the start of the week. It took the life out of me for a few days. Then last night, I launched the theatre production and play reading group that I have been manically working on for the past month. And guess what...
It went beautifully.
People showed up, new friends and old. I was very nervous because ironically most none of my closest friends could make the first meeting. So I knew I had to be in beast mode to host, believe in, and facilitate this group of artists looking to read a play out loud. The play of the night was Alice in Wonderland; a story about finding yourself amongst the madness, and trusting who you are. I found it fitting to be the first play of this endeavor. Especially ending January with such a story; the madness of all my new lessons and motivations swimming around me, asking questions to understand the changes, but ultimately finding my way back and realizing how much is possible. It just felt right. So everyone came, wine and snacks were dispersed, and we sat in a circle and started to read. Everyone got into it, people were laughing, moments were created, and a camaraderie started to form. Now of course, the first time doing anything is a trial and error. I have had to learn how to refine the idea enough to where it can live on past me. But I must admit... I felt proud. I felt happy. I felt I had accomplished my goal of bringing artists into a room and letting art unfold! I'm telling you now...it's not easy. It takes a lot of gull to have people believe in you, let alone believe in what you're 'selling'. But they did. They showed up. They supported. They believed.
For this, I am forever grateful. I will never forget the first meeting. The first set of people to believe in me. To believe in my idea. I'll tell ya, it feels pretty good to share your madness with other people. We're all mad here as the saying goes.
This brings me to my thoughts on February. I am nervous. I am nervous because of how much was accomplished and changed in January. The Revival Tour revved up my soul to come back to LA and really set into motion all the things I could imagine for myself. Now that it's been my realty for a month, I started thinking about what I would want to accomplish for February. How would I maintain this momentum of regeneration and motivation?
To be honest, I am not entirely sure. At this moment in time, I am sort of caught between The Revival Tour aftermath and the promise of the Regeneration Encore. I don't want to lose myself in the cycle of life again. When you start over in the year, you can feel the clean slate. You can feel the weight of all the chaos of the last year slip away. After only one month, I can slowly feel the chaos wheel creeping in. Letting me know that the blank slate is behind me. So I see my challenge. I must find a way to maintain that beginners mindset. By this I mean, never letting anything feel stale. The minute something becomes familiar, it becomes jaded. I don't want to feel jaded. In fact, I am making it my mission to not feel this way.
I will rengerate by keeping myself outside my comfort zone. By finding new ways to challenge and enrich my life. I now have a strong foundation thanks to the Revival Tour, but the challenge lies in maintaing that feeling.
“How puzzling all these changes are! I'm never sure what I'm going to be, from one minute to another.” - Alice
I take it as a sign that I woke up without an alarm this morning. I trust that some part of myself needed to face the discomfort and the fear of starting a new month, but it not being a new season of life. We must always keep going. Things don't erase when we want them to. We don't get a fresh clean slate every first of the month to start a new. And I must find my place in the chaos wheel, so that I remain the eye of the storm. I must enrich and enforce my practice each day. I must challenge and pursue the things that scare me, even if my confidence dwindles from it. I must take care of myself to show up for myself in ways that I have avoided in the past. I must keep momentum.
You may be asking why it matters so much to me that this month, this life, mean something deeper. That I have these standards for myself...it's because it feels worse when you don't. I don't want to feel the lack of not caring about anything. I don't want to feel the regret of not trying. I don't want to go mad.
“Have I gone mad?
I'm afraid so, but let me tell you something, the best people usually are.”
―Alice in Wonderland
Ok fine. Maybe I am mad. Maybe I need to be mad. But I'd rather be mad and love that I am mad, than fear it. And to love it, you have to invest in your madness with everything you have. To do this, you must stay focused and present. So I will.
I am going to enter into this month showing up the rest of this week as best as I can. But I can feel it. I need to get away. I need to recharge after this month of constant doing. I must recharge my internal batteries, so that I can come back and kick of the the theme of the new month. I won't reveal what that is yet. But if January was flexible persistence, February is going to really test the waters.
“How puzzling all these changes are! I'm never sure what I'm going to be, from one minute to another.”
― Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
So I know. I trust. I believe. There is more for me to learn. But with each lesson, I get closer. With each set back I understand deeper. With each day, my personal legend becomes clearer. And if I forget to set an alarm and miss a class, I won't knock myself down because I will be grateful it gave me something to write about.
My point is this: everything has a lesson, even if it starts to feel Overwhelming and mundane, challenge yourself to find the lessons. Challenge yourself to be flexible but persist. Challenge yourself to be and to stay mad. Because you can't really help it. We're all mad here.
Cheers to the ongoing of a maddening good year. And cheers to finding your place in Wonderland.
“That's the reason they're called lessons," the Gryphon remarked: "because they lessen from day to day.”