I haven’t blogged about my LA trip in some time, and I guess that’s because the struggles I was going through were too personal or too political, or just wouldn’t be interesting to my audience.
The first thing I didn’t really want to get into writing about publicly is how bothered I am by liberal bandwagoners. Don’t get me wrong, I’m liberal, I’m totally against our awful, awful new president, I’m sickened by big oil money destroying the planet and continuing an awful legacy of imperialism. But I also believe that if I’m not fighting these evils in a consistent, everyday way all the time, I don’t have any right to chastise people for not contributing to the struggle in the way I think they should.
This kind of segues nicely from an example of something “too political” to share to an example of something “too personal,” because this resentment that I have against these people actually led to some really important spiritual work. (And this is the part I’m hesitant to share:) I’m part of a loose spiritual community of largely agnostic creative folks. Most of us do 12th step work, some of us go to therapy or participate in creative recovery (i.e. the Artist’s Way) as well. The spiritual work I mentioned began with talking about this resentment, with not being too afraid of being judged to say that I resent some progressive activists. That was actually a really big step for me to say “this is what I actually think when I’m not trying to fit in.” A lot of the inventory work that I've done recently — inventory being a formal process of written self-reflection — reveals that I really want this group of young, creative, progressive people to like me, but at the same time I’m not feeling a lot of what they say and do. So why do I care so much what they think? So just standing up for what I think, even to a close friend or mentor, is a big step for me, and part of a greater journey. And when I did tell my friends, lo and behold many of them were in the same boat as me — wanting change, but also understanding the need to have integrity and not cut others down just to be part of a club.
I still think people might judge me, or worse, be bored, by this, but I just had to get it out to break the ice on my LA blog. I am, after all, coming home to Portland in a couple weeks (surprise!) and feel like I have a lot of stuff I’ve learned to share. Most of the rest of the stuff I have to share is an extension of this same transformation of not giving a shit what other people think and valuing my own truth, so stay tuned because I’m actually really excited about it.
Peace for now!