Ugh. Ugly feeling this morning. I’m tired. Physically, emotionally and, especially, spiritually.

Last night was open mic in New London and, for a change, I was running sound – through my own gear. From comments – and to my own ears – it sounded really good

[the beauty of working hard for so many years is that I have been able to buy really good sound equipment, and I know how to use it the right way]

and part of me was, as always, very pleased to be able to help people sound as good as they can – or at least remove live sound concerns from their performance

[I’m not delusional enough to believe I can make someone awful sound great]

Yet, at the same time, I could feel myself shrivelling inside. Literally shrivelling, wanting to recoil, retreat, just literally run away.

Which is nothing to do with anyone else, and everything to do with me.

I posted a few weeks ago that I could feel my acoustic solo presence receding for a while – and last night was part of that, of course, but there is something more to it. I just plain did not want to be there – couple of times, I was asked if I was going to play some songs. No. I just had so little energy to even put myself up and out there.

Which is nothing to do with anyone else, and everything to do with me.

When I was thanked by performers, I was happy to say thanks – and mean it. I was pleased to help you do what you want to do

[even if you have no idea that to sing live, you actually have to get within a foot of the microphone]

even if every moment offered me a bitter mirror.

This

[THIS]

is not what I want.

Which is nothing to do with anyone else, and everything to do with me.

It has everything to do with the fact that this artistic life I am living – is not working for me.

[and thank goodness I have family and friends who love me, and bless me with the opportunity to love them]

It has everything to do with the fact that, while I find joy in moments – of course I do, adrenaline, dopamine, etc. all do their thing during performance –  in the wider view, I am slowly grinding towards apathy.

Through my art, I seek to fulfill fundamental needs:

  • To have impact, to make a difference, to affect people
  • To gain meaningful connection, that takes us both further

And, of course, the challenge and opportunity of untested territory, the place with no maps. The place where possibilities can be harnessed, and the world

[and I]

can change and grow.

The place of transformation. Personal and communal.

I thought that if I gave enough of myself to the universe, I might find reciprocity for my energy – yet, this morning, I find myself half way down that one way street. Again. There is a pattern here, and it needs to be broken.

Of course, I can keep giving, putting the energy out there – if I stop, won’t I just be ensuring I never meet my needs? That’s a pretty sad way of achieving some certainty

[and I’ve never been a fan of cutting off the nose to spite the face]

though, given that:

  • I write – but few read
  • I sing – but few listen
  • I coach – but few seek change

why would I continue to do any of the above?

One way reciprocity is slowly erasing my will to give.

Which is nothing to do with anyone else, and everything to do with me.