I have been in Phoenix the past week.  The experience has been incredible on so many levels.  As I packed up and prepared to leave from Sedona, I anticipated four solid days of painting and writing.  I had a couple of commitments and was open to a few hours of building relationships with new friends.  Most of the time, Mr. Pooh and I would be sinking deeply into the creative process.   I will challenge myself to write about that part of the experience one day but today we explore another facet of this recent adventure.
I wake up in Phoenix, settling in, I write during the day.  That evening I attend an event held right there at theSPACE where I am staying.  It is a spoken word slam, the voices of the artists participating are powerful, some of it clever, funny, some raw and passionate. A young man, high school age, brilliantly exposes the superficiality of conversation among his peers. His perspective one that encompasses a broader view of the world, oh how I celebrate this! A young black woman tears the heart with her account of a mother lost to her children through her addiction. My heart opened, I offer a prayer. May these voices be heard far and wide; these people have something important to say.
That same night, I step out to a ladies event, BLUSH, it isn’t far, nothing is far from where I am staying. Central Phoenix is like a small town with a lot more stuff.  I dance, visit with friends, meet a few new people. Contact with Big City Lesbians, I am learning a new language, more on that later.  I head to theSPACE to set up my studio.  By the next morning I am deep in it, new canvases, paints, pencils, inks, sketches, writings, all the tools of the trade.  My best work happens in a space of freedom and possibility, both were present.  With a little help from my friends, I extend my trip three extra days.  This is so working for me.
Friday night I roadie for my dear friend Adam Smith, talented musician, songwriter, painter & poet, absolutely delightful human being, the performance is divine, the urban coffee shop experience one to be repeated. Extreme Bean Coffee in Tempe, Friday nights in July, Adam plays 8-10 pm. Fantastic, check him out.  Sunday I have a delightfully nourishing visit with a valued friend. Monday I am tutored in business systems to support my work. Tuesday headshots, Wednesday a productive meeting about our next event “Vibrations ..,” dinner out with friends, connections and intimate conversation.  I am going to find it hard to let go when it is time to head back to Sedona.
Okay, so here I am having a really great, productive, personally and professionally fulfilling time, a couple of the gals I have become friends with are performing this coming Friday night, July 15th, at this cool little place called Club Sutra.  They are calling it Jamfest (details below). It is a big deal concert and fundraiser for Youth at Risk.  An event I feel compelled to attend. I am scheduled to be in Goldenstein Gallery Jamfest Friday through the following Monday. These days require that I be out and on, I am resident artist but am also in sales, the arts are counting on me. Although the thought is appealing it is potentially rather impractical.  High on the city vibe I look at the perceived obstacles and set in motion a plan to overcome them.  Sometimes I have this idea I can do anything, like I am some kind of a super hero. Reality usually catches up with me, my humanity exposed.
 To attend this red, hot, rockin’ event, raise funds, build friendships, I will need to head to Phoenix after the gallery closes, 6pm, a two hour drive for those that may not know the area. I will need to be pressed and ready for gallery duty the following morning at 10am.  16 hours, at first blush I should be plenty of time, 8 hours sleep, 4 hours of driving, 1 hour for miscellaneous bits, 3 hours to support the cause, piece of cake.  I will go with a friend we can share the gas and the driving.  Sounding really great!
I wake up Thursday morning, drop-dead hour, time to get back to Sedona. I begin to think of the week ahead, it is riddled with details of managing my life. I am also a week out from an event of my own, well, one I am part of, “In the Footsteps of Mary Magdalene” I will address a couple hundred people for 20 minutes about compassion.
What am I thinking?  I am 50.  My energy stores are quite different than they were say, 20 years ago.  Intoxicated by the people of the city and all the city doings I may have gotten a bit ahead of myself.  As I get closer to Sedona, my Sedona things in sharper focus, I realize it may not be a prudent choice to head back to Phoenix for the one night. As I feel a bit of sobriety coming on I realize it might actually be downright destructive.
So, to my question, “does that make me fickle?”  It seemed like such a great idea at the time, with further thought and sober consideration it seems the more responsible thing to hold my course in Sedona, to show up as fully present as possible when I am here and when the time comes that I find myself back in the big city vibe I will show up fully there. Oh dear, I just might be behaving like a grown up.
I will miss the show. It will be fabulous and will support a great charity, there will be fun, laughter, possibly a bit of drama, you know how we are.  But even if I am fickle, what you will also know about me is when I do show up, I will show up fully.  Have a great time ladies!  I will miss you!
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Some Rockin’ Hot Talent!

 

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