OMG I'm so fucking excited right now! Right now I kind of feel like this was one of the best nights in my life, a turning point night, a night where Dar Williams' words: "If we're lucky we feel our lives, know when the next scene arrives, sometimes we start in the middle and work our way out," just fits, like this is the time I've been waiting for, this *is* my nexus. I love how easily I learn things. How I can ask questions about myself and run into internal dilemmas and then somehow just find my way to the answers, to the way out of whatever dilemma I'm in, run into unsolvable problems that I solve in 26 hours flat, that kind of thing. Intrapersonal intelligence. I learn fast. LJ Wooden always appreciated that about me, how they would help me realize something about myself and how unlike so many I'd actually put it into practice and come out a few months later really transformed.
Sometimes I think I have a hell of a lot of it, sometimes I think I don't because certain things really do take years and years to figure out, and I feel like I get consistently stuck in the same patterns. Like the fact that I need a warmup. I really have a capacity to get hella inspired and enthusiastic about things (and that's soooo where I am now) but socially that takes a lot of warming up for me, a lot of the time, and a party with a lot of amazing people is one way to do it. Whitewater rafting is one way to do it. Until *something* warms me up my brain just works slowly, it doesn't get stimulated socially, I don't know if that's an ADD thing, it kind of seems like it. As soon as I start warming up (which summer camp does for me) the part of me that I love starts coming out, and that's what happened to me tonight. Just after I was kind of feeling like it was impossible to reach this true self that I thought was me, but was so hard to reach so maybe it was just an illusion and I was just this flat, dull, uninspired person... I now remember that, yes, I am the kind of person who gets excited, I just haven't had a whole lot to warm me up lately.
Like my interactions with James have almost always come at a time when I haven't had a whole lot of warmup, or time to play and try things out, and last night I felt my inhibitions and blocks in a painful way. So I decided I had to do something about it, I had to let myself warm up, so I let my body move and let myself be more emotionally vulnerable than I usually do. So I haven't been able to be my uninhibited self or broken through the shyness with zir. But now I'm sure that will come with time. We can negotiate those kinds of experiences that will nourish us both. We talked about maybe doing a mini-golf thing sometime which is definitely something that warms me up. :) The more consistent time I spend with somebody, the more I warm up; and I am now confident that this friendship will grow, slowly, in the way I'd like it to, though yesterday that was feeling kind of up in the air for me. Also the more social I allow myself to be, the more my brain stays in that primed kind of state, and that's going to be really important to my healing. James suggested that I do something social twice a week and at first the social anxiety terrified of reaching out for an intentional hangout kind of terrified me me but more and more it's seeming possible.
I love Atlanta. I'm so glad I'm here, and though I've been here four months, it's getting harder and harder to imagine leaving for somewhere else. I'm so grateful right now, and grateful for how this medication is letting me do things with my life that I couldn't have imagined -- like, tonight normally wouldn't have been possible. I left the party around 11:30, so I was there a good four and a half hours, and though I could have stayed longer and have been totally cool, it just felt like the right time to leave. I'd saturated enough and had gotten what I needed to out of the evening so I came back to write and wonder.
I realized this about myself on the drive home: the issue of wearing a mask, I think it's a mental thing, and I try to think my way out of it, or force my way out of it, but it's really more of an energetic issue than I think. The core of it is right in my core, right in through my navel, and I feel that area so strongly now, releasing parts of the mask, which have a lot to do with childhood abuse and trauma and expectation of future trauma; inability to see the world sometimes as but a traumatic place, and a part of my healing is to begin to find hope. To start seeing the incredible patterns in things and the hope for the world, and if I ever need help in that arena, I will remind myself to talk to Cosma.
Cosma is becoming such a closer friend and I'm so glad they're back in Atlanta! Tonight we laughed as we told others the story of how we met. They are just an incredible source of inspiration for me. Cosma asked to give me a hug at one point while we were sitting by the campfire and it was a really gentle sweet hug that I really needed and that really helped balance my energy system. I told them about my goal of making social plans at least twice a week and they told me they were really open and didn't like to make plans usually because sometimes pain will lead them to cancel last minute, and I told them I was okay with last minute changes. They said they want to hang out more. We're planning a trip to Savannah and to the beach in the summer when it's really smoltering.
We started talking about near-future technology, and how information and our capacity to do things with information is growing so exponentially, and how we're kind of at the curvy part of a hockey stick where all of a sudden there's nowhere to go but healing. If I remember my math I think it's called an asymptote. That's basically so much of our fascinating road trip conversations between Detroit and Boston, talking about the world and all the amazing things Cosma knows about how the world is changing way behind the scenes, way under the radar of even those in power. The capacity of virtual reality for healing and the so many things that have been done and are being worked on right now. Cosma just knows so much about so many different aspects of this stuff that I can't help but feel so grateful to be alive right now. While we were talking, I had this knowing, I told them I felt like I'm here on this planet to sit back and watch this transformation happen and fucking enjoy it because it's *gonna* happen. And we just looked at each other with such wonder and awe in our eyes and laughed and ... it was a sacred moment of connection. We're the ones we've been waiting for, did we ever think it would happen? Now I'm listening to Aloha Ke Akua by Nahko Bear which is just this phenomenal song:
"The more I understand about the human race, the less I comprehend about our purpose and place and maybe if there was a clearer line the curiosity would satisfy. Time based prophesies have kept me from living, in the moment I am struggling to trust the divinity. Of all the gods. And what the hell they have planned for us. I cry for the creatures who get left behind. But everything will change in the blink of an eye." AND THAT'S FUCKING IT! I didn't get it before, oh my God. Yeah, maybe we'll lose dolphins, I don't know what we'll lose, and it's tragic but I know it, everything will change in a blink of an eye and we'll be like, whoa, the world has changed, how did that happen? It's so beautiful and I'd lost faith in that beauty." Later in the song -- this is so perfect and I never really understood the song before, but, I just told Cosma, "You give me that clearer line, my friend <3 <3 <3". It's what I've sensed all along but it was so hard to believe in it, but it's becoming easier, becoming more *natural*. Later in the song they sing -- so fucking genius -- "And what is the porpose, what is the porpose. And would you believe it, would you believe it. If you knew what for you were for, and how you became so informed, bodies of info performing such miracles, I am a miracle made up of particles. And n this existence. I'll stay persistent, and I'll make a difference, and I will have lived it."
I think it's how I always imagined it would happen. Information will change the world and in the blink of an eye medicine will be transformed, education will be transformed, the media will be transformed, our political systems will be transformed, we'll finally catch up to the technology and the possibilities that are out there. So much is happening in information and technology that even if there is some core command of this oppressive power structure, even they cannot keep up with all this information, which is light years ahead of the practical applications and the realities we're seeing in our lives, eventually the technology applications *will* catch up and amazing things will be possible that Cosma is really confident are a very good thing, a healing thing, for our planet. And I hope we don't lose dolphins or tigers before it happens. But this song is like, my new faith, it's been so long since I've had faith in anything really and now I feel like I have faith again: "And what is the porpoise, what is the purpose. And would you believe it, would you believe it. If you knew what for you were for, and how you became so informed, bodies of info performing such miracles, I am a miracle made up of particles. And in this existence. I'll stay persistent, and I'll make a difference, and I will have lived it."
Bodies of info, that's what's going to change the world, that's what I believe in. I believe in love and I believe in the goodness of human nature and I believe we all have the capacity for transformation and healing and the world has a capacity for healing and transformation. I believe in redemption. It's been a long time since I've had a grounded faith and I'm finding it. I also, really believe in the Kali Yuga. I believe in Atlantis, I think, and I don't know if it's a place that existed in the past or a remembering of our inevitable future (not the sinking, but the culture and the technology). I believe we all knew we were goddesses and gods and divinities roaming the world and this was once the state of things but we forgot the goddess and we entered into a long age of oppression that Hindus call Kali Yuga. We will cycle out of this painful age and we will remember the goddess and healing society will be possible again and we *will* build Atlantis. I don't know how long it will take, but looking at the arc of history, we are at a nexus, and it's so hard to imagine what the world will look like 500 years because sadly we don't imagine surviving so long. But what if we did?
There is cloud medicine, or I don't know what it's called exactly, where people on one part of the planet can write a program with biological variables asking a question that they're interested in, and send that to a computerized lab half-way around the world will run experiments to answer the question. If that's possible, and even happening now, and it only scratches the surface of what technology now is capable of, it *will* all change in a blink of an eye. I think finally there's such an explosion in information that if we can keep ourselves from destroying the planet and making ourselves extinct first, it's *going* to change society, the practical applications *are* going to catch up, for example, labs and so much is going to be mechanized which will eventually transform the whole concept of work as we know it and... we've already discovered the most destructive technology, but it's information that's going to save us, information will help us do things better and better so that finally we're at a place where the world is beginning to heal from centuries or millennia of trauma.
Healing is inevitable if we can survive, and hopefully with as many species and as much biodiversity intact as possible. Even one tiny piece of that like psychedelic research for trauma and mental illness has the capacity to completely transform the way we do things and experience things. I was talking about feeling like we're in a nexus, I'm in a nexus, which we talked about at the pagan meetup recently, and Cosma said it's interesting I say that because there's actually a series of books called Nexus which is hard science fiction about potential near futures of the world which, I guess, I'm really interested in. It's what's going to give me hope again. I always forget how interested I'm in that because, well, I have a history of being a sort of primitivist and feeling like technology generally is destructive and we use its applications for war and domination. I stopped studying physics because I was so pissed off with how its applications are mostly used by the military (well, that's not the only reason).
But Facebook, it can be used in all sorts of ways but I think it's had an overall huge positive effect on the world which will only continue to mushroom as all these synapses connect. And that's just one tiny piece of this huge new world emerging, like the universe is a brain and all the neural networks are finally coming together and we're about to explode into new consciousness. And yeah, THIS is something I'm excited about, that I wouldn't let myself get excited about because I still have this old paradigm idea of technology as part of the military-industrial-prison complex, which it is, but also more and more with the way everything is exploding, technology is actually healing, it can't help but be, because we're getting to that critical point where this current system just cannot hold. I was kind of disappointed that I lost my interest in technology because when I was really little that used to give me so much hope for the future and when I realized all the bad things science *does* I was kind of heartbroken. Now I think I'm getting back an old piece of me, a part that can be excited about the future of the world again in the way I was when I was a kid.
I'm so excited, about so many things, and I think I know where my passion went. There was a hopelessness about the world, that came out of trauma, but it was a collective trauma. It was the trauma of my past along with the trauma of this collective hopelessness about the future of the world, which I soak up empathically to transmute for healing. As a healer, that's what I do: I feel all the shit so I can transmute it for the wellbeing of everyone. Normally I think I would be excited but up in space in a way that ultimately wouldn't be good for me but I am so grounded in my excitement. I haven't lost my creativity or my passion due to this medication (I was so scared that it would do that to me, especially after talking to James last night). I've just become more grounded in my expression of it. Tonight I realize that I really can be fully alive in the midst of the world. And, if I couldn't be hopeful about the future of the world, it was really hard to heal in certain ways. I just posed the question last night about my capacity for excitement and emotional intensity and passion and I have my answer in a way I never would have expected to find one. I have my answer to so many things tonight. I haven't prayed over the last day, at least not knowingly, but I feel like all the answers to my prayers are coming.
It was a good party. And I have a big weekend ahead of me. Tomorrow is GAY-JU Queer Spa Day, where really low cost spa (steam baths and all that) and massage and everything is available for like, $10, as a fundraiser for the Theater of the Oppressed training that's coming up in June which I've also decided to register for. It's a 5-day training in downtown Atlanta, a complete sliding scale from $0-100 for the whole five day event, and... it's an opportunity to get involved in theatre again! It's a Theatre of the Oppressed facilitator training so not only will I get to immerse myself in TOTO, I'll get to learn to facilitate it -- and to be a facilitator of anything theatre related is something that I never really thought would happen to me! That's in June so that's one really big thing I'm looking forward to.
And then, Sunday. Cosma just told me about a brunch for people interested in volunteering with Pride School Atlanta!!!!!!
So, I heard on the local public radio station an hour long segment about Pride School Atlanta, a free school that's starting up that is open to everyone but it is queer and trans affirming, and will probably be attended by mostly queer and trans kids. There are very few schools like that in the entire country and one of them is starting in Atlanta. It's a free school. I've been really interested in free school philosophy and even helped to start a free school in Worcester but I got so disappointed by the lack of oppression consciousness of these schools. And, with queer and trans kids being the focus of this school, there is at least some oppression awareness in the very makeup. I want to see if I can get involved and to make this school as oppression aware as it can possibly be. Not only that, with my business maybe I can work something out where they share about us and we donate 10% of our profits to helping them succeed. I mean, everything falling together? This is wow. This is what I've always wanted to DO but I've always felt like, I didn't want to move somewhere just because there was an alternative school there and now... exactly what I want is right here. Maybe I'll get to work with kids, with queer and trans kids, as I've always dreamed! Maybe my dreams are coming true!
Also, Kate works at the Atlanta International School and told me that they're open to volunteers in their after school program, and that the people they work with are cool, accepting, to the extent like they'll put in 70% effort into getting pronouns right and everything, and they're open to trans people working there and... my life feels so exciting now, I can't believe it!
Then Clyde told me about a new dog walking job they got and is going to send me the info about how I could maybe get a job, too. I've been wanting to work with animals! Animals, children, getting into Theatre of the Oppressed, I mean, this is so much good. I like Clyde, they remind me a lot of Greta. We spent a good amount of time chatting and they were really easy to get along with. I invited them to the Border Pagans event and they were really interested, happen to be a 4th-generation pagan
Another highlight of the night was meeting L, a trans girl from Mexico who I danced with and had so much fun dancing with I might invite them to come over sometime to dance with me (now that James has told me there is a speaker system in the living room, which I had thought was just a CD player!) She is just, adorable. She moved from Mexico about a year ago for a legal sort of job and then that job ended and now they no longer have a Visa to live in the States but they have a lawyer and are looking for asylum. Because it's impossible to be trans in Mexico, she said, without bad things happening, unless you live in this really rich LGBTQ area of Mexico City which is just like one neighborhood and is too expensive to live anyway. We talked about me maybe getting some Spanish transcription/translation work for her to do because she can no longer legally work in this country, but... I know a way around it. It might not be legal but the chances of anyone finding out about it are pretty much nil. I'll hire them as an independent contractor, and to be safe send the money to their family in Mexico, so that I can say I'm hiring a Mexican independent contractor. There is nothing legally stopping me from hiring a Mexican as an independent contractor as long as they are not illegally living in the US which, since I'm sending their checks to Mexico, first of all, the IRS never has to find out about. I'm excited about using my business potentially in that way. We talked about video games and they're just getting into programming and gah, I have such a crush on her. And I'm really lucky once again that the one I happen to have a crush on is the one who actually did want to spend a lot of time with me through the night, who danced with me while I spoke Spanish with them which was AMAZING I LOVE LANGUAGES OMG YAY.
Just this morning I wrote on Facebook how I tried to dance by myself and felt so self-conscious and the same night I'm dancing with this cute-and-sweet as hell Mexican trans girl who... really doesn't have many friends here or know anybody, and are so open to connecting. I mean, they were really really excited about having driven 2 hours to come to this party and finally getting a chance to socialize and I'm so happy they spent such a good amount of time with me. She talked about how she wasn't that good at French and then she said something about dancing in French about dancing I think and it just made my heart melt unexpectedly like, whooooooa you speaking French is so adorable and sexy and damn caught me totally by surprise in a good way, she almost had me on the floor. Then I asked what her favourite French movie was and she said this is going to sound cliche but... and then came Amelie and it was a squee moment. OMG I love her. She lives about an hour from here, which for me really isn't so far to see a friend, and I really want to make time to hang out with her. She seems to have all the time in the world. When I hugged her goodbye she winked and pointed and said, "Well, I've got your number and you've got mine." Seriously, MELT.
So that's where I am right now. So much hope, finally, of my life going in a direction that absolutely thrills me. Of setting goals for myself. Of being excited about life. I keep thinking about this off and on but I want to write about it because it keeps slipping my mind apparently. As well as facilitating TOTO, I want to facilitate Joanna Macy's Work That Reconnects. I'd like to perhaps change things slightly and lead them my way, with more awareness of intersectionality, but I think going through training to facilitate that kind of workshop is like a perfect goal for me. It's not so challenging as to be overwhelming right now (like going through Shalom process training might be) but it's challenging enough and it's got enough juice to it that it feels really right. And it's the kind of healing that I want to do right now. I want to reconnect. I want to rekindle my hope in what she calls the Great Turning, in what Charles Eisenstein calls "the more beautiful world our hearts know is possible."
To add to all the synchronicities and all the answered prayers, I got a message from LJ while I was at the party. (It's so weird to have a mentor named LJ and to write on LJ.)
So, this morning I wrote about feeling self conscious about dancing alone, and LJ tells me:
"Hi Lily. Just read your message about dancing. Come to my new retreat in Canada "shadow"- or waking eros! Where the heck r u anyways? And, I thought u wanted to do Skype sessions... Loving you."
LJ hasn't been good at following through with the Skype sessions thing, I didn't think it was going to happen, but LJ is my mentor, LJ is the reason I am who I am and not who I was three years ago, LJ is the reason I'm out as trans, LJ is so much to me. LJ really must stand for Little Jesus because that's the effect they have on me. Anyway, last night James was suggesting that a goal I could set for myself might be to do some kind of therapy work since I'm working through a lot of trauma, and... I've always wanted to do Skype sessions with LJ, and absolutely the PERFECT opportunity for therapy has arisen within 24 hours and I'm kind of...
the universe has given me every fucking thing I've been wanting for ever in just one day.
I really did find my life purpose in Asheville. I was just so devastated afterwards because I had these visions of starting a school and playing world-redeeming songs on violin and of an emerging world where we're finally focusing our collective energy on healing and awe and wonder and creating and... I was really starting to think all of that was a pipe dream. but now it's happening. I started researching education and I couldn't find any opportunities to get involved in a way that worked for me and I felt like the dream I've always had of being a teacher in an alternative anti-oppression school was just never going to happen. I felt like that was sort of my life purpose but it was impossible and I so didn't have the energy to put into it or know where to begin and... now it's falling into my hands. So much of what I dreamed about is actually happening. It's like I saw the future.
I have been wanting to get involved in education again, so badly. This is what I was meant to do. I used to have such big dreams about education but I lost those too. So I'm so excited about this volunteer lunch. I mean, what the fuck is happening to me? This is my passion, this is what I love in so many ways, what I didn't think was possible for me anymore, and the possibility of LIVING that dream is right here in Atlanta! How could I have asked for anything more perfect than that?