It’s been three years since I made the announcement I was archiving this blog. I closed it to launch my namesake blog as part of a marketing plan. But shifting from focusing on an action — keeping the dream, to focusing on a person — Demian Yumei, didn’t work for me.
I thought, at first, it was because of a lack of confidence or the erroneous beliefs artists often have about self promotion. But now I realize it was about being true to who I am.
I never wanted to be a singer. I just wanted to be singing. I never wanted the spotlight. I just wanted to be communicating. My motivation was to touch others and shift perception through various creative mediums, to convey ideas and create a safe space for connection.
I realize now regardless of how much my reluctance to be front and center may come from personal issues, it also comes from the deepest core of my truth. I am an introvert. I don’t think there’s a single performance where I haven’t prayed for strep throat or a snow storm, even in July. But once in that stream of creative energy, where Song and the human Heart connects, then I know this is where I’m meant to be and what I am — a conduit for something greater. Not a star or an entertainer or a personality.
Something is Happening
I feel a stirring in the atmosphere, like a storm approaching from beyond the horizon, the setting sun a molten key unlocking the gate to an unknown next chapter of my life — re-shifting focus from self to process, from the noun of me to the verb of me, to the keeping of the dream and what it means.
When I chose Keeping the Dream as the title for my first website in 2000, it was all about idealism and hope. It was about human rights activism. It spoke to the dream of equality and respect and justice. And for me, personally, it spoke of a healing so profound you could live as if you had never been abused.
Almost seventeen years later Keeping the Dream, for me, has come to mean defying depression and cynicism. My dream focuses now less on justice and more on love, less on quantum leap healing and more on compassionate acceptance.
Losing my sister to cancer in June of 2004, my first husband and lifelong friend to cancer in June of 2009, and my songwriting partnership, DreamSinger, in June 2015, were all losses I felt deeply, but my sister’s death seemed to be the deciding hit. I never quite recovered from that.
New Decision/New Direction
The death of Vernice was the catalyst for a 12 year mudslide into depression that bowled me over, spitting me out every now and then just enough to gasp the air, to sail briefly over the mud, giving me the illusion that I’m okay, giving others the illusion I was still “stubbornly idealistic”, still DreamSinger, before being sucked back in and under.
But I haven’t been the “me” people thought I was and I haven’t been DreamSinger for a long time.
I can still feel the momentum of those losses and I don’t know if it’s going to stop or slow down. I don’t know what I will hit when I reach the bottom or if there is a bottom; if the sudden flash of light and expanse of blue is merely the opening of a window that will just as quickly close or a door that will stay open.
But I’ve decided — Every opportunity I have to come up, I’m seizing that moment to not just gasp for air but to grasp a piece of that sky sailing past me. I’m going to snatch a scrap of blue, peel off a white of cloud, pinch a ray of setting/rising sun, the fiery reds and muted blue of dream, and patchwork my possibilities, the what-can-be’s back together, piece by piece.
And that’s why I’m now closing my namesake blog and resurrecting this one, to find new direction and new meaning — a piece of sky at a time.
Keeping the Dream
Photo by Don Waters