Running From Our Selves

:: On Escapism ::

it is one thing to go to another place because it is calling to you. it is another to go to a place because you don’t want to be in the one that you are currently in.

i know because i have tried to do it.

i tried to go to Berlin. i tried to make that happen. and i got thwarted. (most notably by my self.)

my proposal wasn’t truly honest. it was in the sense that i was saying that art here is over and i want to go to the place where it is present and to figure out why. but my proposal was unclear because i wasn’t being truthful with my self about what i was running away from here. and staying here (being here then, being there now), i now know the difference between escaping and following. seeking vs. finding. making things happen vs. allowing them to. running from one’s self vs. facing our true selves.

as i work on my Japan proposal, new elements keep presenting themselves. i never intended to apply for the Fulbright again. well, when i didn’t get it in 2007, i declared the intention to apply again one day, and then sent that intention out into the wind. and it has blown back to me. from Nelson’s Suzuki suggestion in Singapore, to the email from Brooklyn College in Bali requesting applications for Fulbright scholars, to one of my most trusted collaborators applying as well, to the help and support of my Japanese and American friends and colleagues, to the excitement in the air when i tell people about my proposal, to the National Geographic magazine that my mom gave me which totally changed and re-inspired my proposal—i feel like this is happening because i am here now. it wouldn’t have happened if i didn’t stay in New York. i thought about moving to Berlin anyway in 2007 after the devastation of not getting the scholarship, but it felt like i would be running to something with no purpose. i was just running.

that was the year that i started training with SITI Company. and that was the year that my entire world changed—just by staying in the one that i was already in.

and now i am being called to Japan. i wouldn’t be able to be here fully if i didn’t answer that call. even if i don’t get this particular opportunity (even though in my heart of hearts i feel that it will be better for the planet if i do), i know that it has been worth it to go down this path. it’s like returning to one’s childhood home. you can walk the same streets, but they are changed. and they inform you of how you have changed too.

this new Fulbright journey has already, in its very early stages, unfolded a wealth of adventure. it is allowing me to explore the land of the Lobsterbird, and i didn’t even need to leave home—no stress of packing, of booking flights, getting to the airport on time. i’ve been transported in the comforts of my own home and have flown to the outer reaches of my imagination and dove down to the depths of my own soul. it gives me great comfort to know that there are more places right here to explore. and more out there as well. i don’t have to run to them. they will appear to me and all i will have to do is reach my little leg out and take a step. and when they call to me, i will fly there in a whole new way…

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Written by lobsterbird