Taking no prisoners. Including herself.

Dear NKS,

Oh, dear. My sweet little blog of half a decade. I feel like it’s been… too long. With all this madness around producing BURST, I haven’t had a lot of time to just… write. Plus, this little identity crisis I seem to have started. It’s a very interesting process, even just taking a stage or pen name. I was talking with a new friend about the frequency with which artists take different names, often an act of creativity in and of itself. What started as a very practical gesture (no one can spell or pronounce my real last name), has turned into a symbolic exploration of identity. Research for next show.

It feels good. It feels right. It’s opened up new visibility into the attachments I have surrounding my identity, and how it frames my view of the world, others, myself. I want to begin to let go of those attachments. It’s also interesting to watch how others react to it — as if I’m asking them to shift something, too, when I shift — support, indifference, confusion, resistance, glee, camaraderie, belittling, enthusiasm. Some people who I thought would be supportive, scoffed. Others I was almost afraid to tell acted with a “well, of course, why not?” kind of attitude (including, God bless her, my mother).

“Your father and I have realized that this [your writing and performing] is not just a hobby.”

I think there’s something really relaxing about the whole thing. It’s surrender. Well, feeling like I have to explain myself (justifying the name change/adoption) is not relaxing in the least. It fills me with dread and anxiety and a primitive “they’re gonna make fun of me” fear. (I am, after all, breaking convention and committing the taboo of Thou Shalt Never Threaten the Sacred Autonomy of the Individual (aka Every Man Likes to Pretend He’s an Island, aka The Ego). But when I am sitting alone, enjoying a hot cup of a tea, looking out over the lake at day-down, which has turned deep blue, now almost a purple, now a charcoal, now black — I smile the softest little smile remembering that nothing matters. I am free.

Until soonish. Love,

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