The Danger of SHAME

Shame is dangerous. Shame causes paralysis. Shame took me out of the game pretty much until I discovered clowning. Even still- it tries to take me out.

I had a powerful dream a few weeks back. I was time traveling and found myself in the 70’s. It became urgent for me to find a telephone so that I could call my child self and tell them that they were stunning- so just forget about needing to prove anything.


But, that IS what I did. Countless hours of feeling unworthy- trying, buying, measuring, weighing, practicing, making, paying, not worth saying- I could have made more of a difference, but I was silenced by shame. (Oh, and if you are at all familiar with shame, then you’ll know about feeling shame for feeling shame… And it’s a downward spiral from there.)

Yesterday we saw white supremacy in action as trump mobs attempted a coup at the capital.

I listened to a great live instagram post about it yesterday by @ckyourprivilege. What stood out to me was what they were saying about shame, and I paraphrase: to white folks- You don’t get to feel shame here. Shame is dangerous. Don’t apologize, organize. (By the way, their instagram account promotes themselves to “guide white folx on the journey of becoming actively anti-racist.”)

It’s not too late for me. I am queer-pansexual, I feel like a woman, and I also feel like a creature. I don’t feel like I fit into the patriarchal capitalist version of “beautiful” and I’m done with trying to. Let’s be interesting, let’s be creative, let’s be smart instead- (haha, as a neurotypical human, I feel insecure about my smrts too but I’m doing my best to educate myself so I can speak up with more eloquence.)

My friend and dance teacher Laura June spoke to the trump supporter’s attack on the capital yesterday: 

The USA and Canada are nation states founded in white supremacy and white exceptionalism at their root, at their core. The state mechanisms were built from inception to protect white people of their right to inflict violence, to steal people, to steal land. None of this is surprising. Horrifying, yes. Heartbreaking. Rage inducing. And aligned with the state mechanisms that upheld the colony/ republic in the first place. This story was written centuries ago, and has been continually unfolding, this is not incongruous.

The remedy: trust and invest in Black and Indigenous led movements.

Laura June

I am grateful for these changing times. There is a revolution happening and I for one am ready for the last dying gasp from the old white supremest patriarchal capitalist regime. 

May we find clarity, kindness, care and compassion in these powerful times.

AND- I will keep making art because I am a creative human. For the highest good, I listen for the impulse which guides me to true expression. I experiment, collect data, make modifications and experiment some more. I have to.

This week I experimented with CASCADING CONUNDRUM. The piece I created is dumb and doesn’t say much- yet I feel vulnerable about it, so there must me something in it.

I had been feeling blocked and a little capsized with the craziness of the world and creating this silly human cartoon helped me find my centre. I got lost in the play, and THAT IS THE JUICE RIGHT THERE. May your creation process bring you joy.

Loretta (The character I am exploring) is not ok- she’s lonely and neurotic and disconnected- and hasn’t sat with herself yet. Can anyone relate? I know it’s ok to be any of those things and the ability to acknowledge and sit in the muck lets it move faster. Make a muck-pie.

This piece is going to be fun to play live- when that happens again. It is interesting that for live theatre- we can draw out moments- extend extend extend while the audience is enjoying something. I bring it to a digital medium- and it needs to go fast. This piece could easily be 15 minutes, yet here it is under 3.

This bit may make it into the CURE FOR FEAR- and it may not, but I’ll put it in my back pocket for a cabaret at some point. I’m going to continue researching, creating, learning and sharing, until I have the best acts that feed the arc of Loretta’s story. For now, I”m calling this piece done, and I’m moving on to the next.

May we all find our true expression that fulfills a need in the world and supports our lives.

Resources from this week:

  • @ckyourprivilege– as I said earlier- awesome resource for anti-racism education
  • Release Technique and Floorwork– Movement class for everybody with Laura June. I LOVE THIS CLASS SO MUCH. It is my weekly vacation from life. A guided embodiment session. This class is a tool for dealing with anything. Give yourself a gift and come to this class.
  • On going conversations around Indigenous Perspective on Canada’s colonial history. (This link is to module 8, but you can start at 1 if you are new). These conversations coincide with INDIGENOUS CANADA‘s education modules. The course is amazing, yet I have trouble assimilating the information in the way that it is offered through the videos. It is much better for me to read the transcripts, which are ALSO available as an option. The conversations on youtube are completely engaging for me and send me off on research tangents.
  • @adriennemareebrown– (she/they) She describes her instagram page as: “my writing/awe/self-love/transformation/travels. I listened to a powerful “meditation” for centring in revolutionary love.
  • Decolonize Myself – on Instagram, and I know I’ve linked this account before- but it’s so great. Send them some love!! They describe their account as: “First Nations Personal journey. Exploring colonization, decolonization, healing, & culture.”

Thank you for reading “THE BONES”- a process report of art and decolonization.

I am currently researching “THE CURE FOR FEAR” – a physical theatrical/ digital arts exploration around the disconnection that occurs from trauma. In a world where the power holders would have us privatize and distrust our feelings in silence and obedience, how does one begin and continue on a journey of decolonization and reconnection? What transformation happens within the psyche as a person emerges from despondency and disembodiment?

I believe in the power of laughter, so, how can one find lightness in the heaviest of topics? How can the subject matter be delivered in a way that surprises the experiencer with their own discoveries?

Always open to feedback if it is constructive and kind. No haters please.

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