I'm showing a new solo.
When he found out, a colleague asked with a smile, "is this your 'mom dance'?"
No, I grimace. I don't know what that is. I don't know what This Is. But I need to get back (to dancing, performing, creating, and developing my voice) and This Is what's coming out.
I grimace because inside of This Work, I feel matter-of-fact. I don't feel the bliss and the joy and the ethereal beauty that instagram and most marketing-to-mom's-companies suggest motherhood could be.
I feel contrasts.
I feel edges that smooth out (with a curve of my son's spine into my body or the acknowledgement from a friend that I'm not an awful person because I just can't... do. anything.)
I feel exhaustion but explosive power.
I feel empty but solid.
Lost, but grounded.
A constant tightness in my chest but a flexibility that can only come with letting go.
This new work feels like I'm picking up the broken pieces - the pieces that shattered, shifted, fell off, ripped, and were lost during the past two years - of my pregnancy and the first year of my son's life. I had so much fear during my pregnancy. I have so much fear of what will come. for him.
But there's a strength in being able to feed my child. To be his place of security when he's faced with a new challenge. To set aside the bull sh!t, drama, and unnecessary noise we're confronted with everyday and say, "I don't have time for that..."
To quote an old poem...
"Quiet down cobwebs
Dust go to sleep
I'm rocking my baby
And babies don't keep"
~Song for a Fifth Child by Ruth Hamilton
This new work feels like I'm keeping the pieces that have survived and building a new mosaic of myself that's more me than the person I knew before.
Woman. Girl. Mother. Wife. Dancer. Educator. Advocate. Friend. Daughter. Seeker. Questioner. Believer. Dreamer. Doer. Empower-er. Body. Hugger. Hold-er...
Digression - in my church growing up, there were mis-matched, asymmetrical pieces of stained glass that were put together to form huge windows in the image of the four writers of the New Testament Gospels. I thought they were hideous.
But now, I'm wondering if the artist wasn't making a statement about humanness and spirituality and beauty in that ugliness.
-- There could be beauty in broken pieces. There could be a great strength - a gift, even - in asymmetrical architecture that models a transparency that refracts, redirects, and enhances light.
This new work is called "Stained Glass".
So, maybe this is my "Mom Dance."
Happy Mothers' Day.
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