Friday, October 9, 2009

TAW: Week THREE – Assignment 1~ Back to my childhood~

Completed: September 9, 2009

In this task I am asked to describe my childhood room~

What WAS my favorite thing about it?

What IS my favorite thing about my room TODAY?

The first thing that came to mind was: I live on the INSIDE now! I NO LONGER wish to escape – to run away. These days I am running TOWARDS something better / SAFER~
Describing my child hood room brings back so many memories… bunk beds with my brother… the many times I was punished… family gatherings every weekend~

… I was born in Bushwick, a Brooklyn girl… raised in Queens NY – Woodhaven Court / ozone park, 95-01 was the street address. I would walk up the stoop enter the front door turn left and enter the house. When you enter the first room you’re in the living room –three large windows on the left.

The couch was underneath the window – directly in front of you was dads amazing stereo system and his many LP’s… directly in front of the sofa was the TV – to the right of the TV was a doorway with NO door that lead right into our bedroom – me, Fabio, and Josie shared the room (Fabiana wasn’t born quite yet…)

My room I can’t remember the color of the walls - -I want to say they were brown paneling – you walk through that door way and to the left was my parents bedroom to the right was the stairway… leading downstairs (my parents wall was made out of this thin plastic – we could hear our parents talking at night and giggling and quite possible working on creating sibling #4). Our bedroom was the small space between our parents room and the stairs…

In my bedroom there was a huge window… I used to love staring outside that window – it over looked the back yard, which was a driveway, and about a block up there was a bridge—an overpass for where I could see Woodhaven Boulevard.

All of our houses in the neighborhood were brick… and connected – so it was one long driveway for the entire block… my favorite part of the room was that WINDOW and the back of my bureau which I used to tag… “Lady Love” was my name. I spent many moments just staring outside of that window – daydreaming – wishing my life was different – wanting to escape – counting the cars that would pass over that ramp. Wanting to be in one of those cars driving AWAY. That room was also the space where my first boyfriend and I fooled around… but unfortunately, the only good thing I can remember about that room was wanting to LEAVE~

My favorite thing about my room about NOW… today, 2009 – has got to be my bed which serves as a couch / my bedroom. Its in the living room – its also the dining room – my office and spiritual space… where I do yoga… where I held the first meeting of the NYC Latina Writers Group… where many women have gathered to celebrate the beauty found in their words… its my shared space with my daughter Courtney---- our sanctuary… so many great movies and conversations had in that space… its where I fell in love with me. It’s the first place I can call HOME~ I have felt so much warmth and love in that space… my sanctuary… its safe… it’s welcoming… I’ve created so much here… so much of who I have become has been formed in that space… its now about me living on the INSIDE now - - no longer wanting be on the outside of that window… I feel whole~

And so it is~

PS. The last thing I wrote… I feel whole… a part of me feels really broken… a part of me misses the SECURITY I felt in my space. A part of me is still traveling around the world and looks forward to being at HOME with me.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

TAW: Week THREE – recovering a Sense of POWER~

This week is about recovering a Sense of POWER~ It’s about dealing with anger… taking our ideas seriously and treating ourselves WELL~ this chapter in THE ARTIST WAY (TAW) is very challenging… a lot of work… and somewhat painful~

“Anger is the firestorm that signals the DEATH of our OLD life…anger is the fuel that propels us into our new ONE” The Artist Way…

In this chapter we learn about synchronicity, “we call it anything but what it is… the hand of God, or good, activated by our own hand when we act in behalf of our truest dreams, when we commit to our own soul…”

Synchronicity is what happens when we ANSWER our call… its what happens when things seem to just fall into place. We start moving towards that thing we want and doors just open… unexplainable, beautiful things start happening. “We like to pretend its is hard to follow our hearts dreams. The truth is, it is difficult to avoid walking through the many doors that will open~” TAW

It’s that thing we DISCOVER… that thing that just comes to us.
“A discovery is said to be an accident meeting a PREPARED mind” albert szent-gyorgyi

“Chance is always powerful. Let your hook be always cast; in the pool where you least expect it, there will be fish” OVID

I loved reading about what our responsibilities are as CREATIVE beings… that we must “remember that creativity is a tribal experience and that tribal leaders will initiate the gifted youngsters who cross their path.” This is the effect we have on the world~

About commitment Julia Cameron says:

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (or creation) there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too.”

But once we are THERE… once we are READY to move forward:

“All sorts of things occur to help one that would otherwise never have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in ones favor all manner of incidents and meetings and material assistance which no man would have believed would have come his way.”

“Genuine beginnings begin within us, even when they are brought to our attention by external opportunities” William bridges

Whatever you think you can do or believe you can do, begin it. Action has magic, grace and power in it.

She writes about the internal battles:

Battling shame. How dare you… tackle that subject… “How dare you open the bedroom door… how dare you down in the cellar, up in the attic, into some dark place where we hide those things we don’t want you to know?” these are those subjects we don’t dare talk about – those things that are taboo to our families and significant others… HOW DARE WE hold up a mirror, call people on their shit, speak our truth… CREATE the world as we see it?


The act of making art EXPOSES a society to itself. Art brings things to light. It illuminates us. It sheds light on our lingering darkness… it casts a beam into the heart of our own darkness and says… SEE~” The Artist Way

“We will discover the nature of our particular genius when we stop trying to conform to our own or other peoples’ models, learn to be ourselves, and allow our natural channel to open~” Shakti Gawain

She ends the chapter talking about how some artists feel shame at admitting their dreams… how we must PROTECT ourselves and our DREAMS~ Urging us to go into our childhood shames… getting them on the page… teaching ourselves who to release doubt~ I would add GUILT~

“The words that enlighten the soul are more precious than jewels” Hazrat Inayat Khan

We also learn about dealing with the external and internal critics… she offers some wonderful exercises.

“Take your life in your own hands and what happens? A terrible thing: no one to blame” Erica Jong

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening, that is translated through you into action, and because there is ONLY ONE of YOU in ALL time, this expression is unique. And if you BLOCK it, it will NEVER exist through any other medium and will be LOST~” Martha Graham

“Creativity is~ SEEING something that doesn’t exist already. You need to find out HOW you can bring it into BEING and that way be a playmate with god~” Michele Shea.

And so it is...

TAW: Week Two – Assignment 5

Completed: Thursday, September 3,2009

Five more imaginary lives...

1. Direct of the AFROLATINOS Foundation
2. Singer
3. Talk show host
4. Painter
5. Life as a man

As the director of the AFROLATINOS foundation... I imagine myself in charge of ensuring that monies and donations actually get to the hands of the people who TRULY need it. All aspects of the organization would be monitored by me... personally... NO more government official INVOLVEMENT… those who STEAL the aid that is being provided. It would be a private institution.

My life as a singer... not sure what that would look like... but it is something that I dreamt of as a child... imagining myself singing now... I would probably not be famous or well known... but would be one of those singers who perform with family members… in very small venues… private parties... local bars... like Tato Torres and Yerbabuena... singing for the love of it... singing because we must answer our call... singing because it’s the closest to GOD we get…

Talk show host... like Oprah... the Latin Oprah... I feel like people take on roles... start shows and then for ratings they end up selling out and talking about shit... some shows BECOME about nothing significant... all about gossip... I really dislike gossip... it doesn’t interest me... say what you want about Oprah... but for me... when I was coming up I saw her as a role model for women... helping women... and that’s what I would want in a show to speak on subjects that mean something to women... that serve women. I could care less about famous peoples private lives...

Painter... I would dedicate my life to painting women... all the aspects of a woman... there beauty... their strength... the darkness, the wounds, the pain, the joy… the ESSENCE of women…

If I were a MAN... I wonder what being a man must feel like... the ability to shake things off... the ability to not be AS emotional as a women... to let go of things quickly... the automatic respect that comes from people when it is a man they are dealing with... unless you are a black or a Latin man coming up in America in the 60s... then that experience might be somewhat different. What would it be like to be a man? I would be curious…

And so it is...

TAW: Week Two – Assignment 4

Completed: Thursday, September 3,2009

In this task I was asked to list ten tiny changes… what are the things I would like to see for myself... from significant to small...

I would like to...

1. Get up earlier
2. Go back to school
3. Finish DOTR
4. Make money for published articles / REMIX... make a lot of money for my writing…
5. Take an acting class / writing class
6. Go to a concert... green day with court or bebe with lulu
7. Have a relationship with a cousin in my life. I would like to heal that relationship...
8. Stop imposing my beliefs on lulu... let her live... its her life
9. Do a great job on the documentary...
10. Live in a clutter free apartment

Select one and do it... its about picking one and doing it one small task at a time… I am working on the DOTR, I am working on making money, and the documentary is coming along beautifully.

And so it is...

TAW: Week Two - Assignment 3~ My Recovery~

In getting back to posting my process using the Artist Way by Julia Cameron.

is about recovering a sense of identity… in dealing with what the author calls crazy makers... and stressing the importance and significance of writing the morning pages. This week is about how the pages are about spending time between god and me.

Prayer: “the great creator has gifted me with creativity. My gift back is my use of it... the process not the product will be my focus...”
She talks about drama that we allow in to distract us… our friends, family and partners…

For LULU: “No matter how slow the film, spirit always stands still long enough for the photographer... IT has CHOSEN~” Minor White

This week we focus on:

Attention as an act of connection...
Paying attention to the signs... SYNCHRONICITY
Fill the well by caring for me
Setting small gentle goals and meeting them
Praying for guidance, courage and humility
She talks about it being harder and more painful to not allow the art to come out of me...
Be alert... to where I am being lead
Choosing companions who encourage me to do the work...
Its my job to do the work not judge it – to just get it done…

Assignment 3A - - Thursday, September 3,2009
This second week is also about time management – who we give our time to – how we procrastinate… I was asked to create a life pie to see where I spend the majority of my time and the areas were: spirituality, romance, friends, work, play and exercise

1. Spirituality is a constant in my life… But could use more attention… actually I could USE A LOT MORE ATTENTION…
2. Romance... I come home tired and don’t have a lot to give... but always want to receive... I must work on this...
3. Work consumes a lot of my time... I work long days...
4. Friends... I miss them... they fill me... they are a source of energy for me
5. Exercise... I haven’t exercised in about two months...
6. PLAY... man... last night I played a little... went to a club... laughed and danced... I need more of this...

Assignment 3B - - Thursday, September 3,2009

Choose 3 affirmations from week one and write it 3 times…

An affirmation is a strong, positive statement that something is already so.

Negative beliefs are exactly that... beliefs... not FACTS
Negative beliefs are exactly that... beliefs... not FACTS
Negative beliefs are exactly that... beliefs... not FACTS

My creativity heals others and myself...
My creativity heals others and myself...
My creativity heals others and myself...

Audacity not talent moves the artist to center stage...
Audacity not talent moves the artist to center stage...
Audacity not talent moves the artist to center stage...

As I create I will be led

And so it is...