At 8:13 this evening here in Vancouver, Fall showed up. She said she’d be here, and here she is. A new season has arrived. Thanks to all of the gods and goddesses who made this possible. Thanks to my parents for… oh wait, there I go into my Tony Award acceptance speech again… back to now, Hilary, back to now.
I was cycling home tonight from my yoga practice (you can see how much I need it) just a few minutes before the aforesaid hour, and had the honour of seeing the the first full moon to shine on an autumnal equinox in 19 years. That’s yer Harvest Moon, baby… shine on, shine on. What a blessing to receive her light. What a perfect space in which to write.
I’ve missed this blog – it’s been more than a week since I hit “New Post,” the longest I’ve gone between and without since I started this adventure, and I’ve missed it. I’ve been filling my days and nights with thoughts about this class I’m teaching. Three sessions down, four more to go, and then it will be on to my next career. “You’re done with it already?,” you ask, sounding surprised-but-not-really. Sure, when I took on this job, I instantly saw myself becoming the world’s expert on “social responsibility in entertainment,” lecturing, writing books, entering the coveted “speakers circuit” at all the hip and groovy retreat centers around the world… and who knows, that may still come to pass. Don’t think I’d mind that at all, really. But boy, is there ever a path (or several) to get there…
“The way becomes manifest upon walking….” There’s that quote again, and it is so true. I want to go from here to the moon in an instant — to become the greatest fill-in-the-blank, to be at once good, no, great, at whatever endeavour I undertake. And should that not happen, if I don’t hit a home run my first time at bat, if I’m not an overnight sensation, I’m quick to shrink back from said endeavour.
It’s not that I never “stick with it” — god knows I heard enough lectures about that “value” when I was young (and had already developed my tendency to not “stick with” things). I’m better now at pushing through my initial hesitations and giving things a chance. But I’ve learned as an adult that at the end of the day, “sticking with” something only works if my heart “sticks.” Sometimes when my head says go, my heart says stay, and perseverance pays off. Sometimes, though, my heart leads me in other directions, and “sticking with it” is not all it’s cracked up to be.
It’s too soon for me to tell whether or not I’ll be a great teacher. Ask me after I’ve taught this course a couple more times. Having these seven-week turns is a perfect amount of time for me to stick with it and see how it feels. For now, I’m loving everything I’m learning. What’s more, my network is expanding exponentially with all of the amazing people I’m connecting with who are walking the walk, creating “media that matters.” (Many of them, in fact, are alumni of the conference of the same name that takes place each spring at Hollyhock. Who knows, maybe I’ll join them next year!) For now, I’m content to withhold judgment and be satisfied just knowing that I’m getting to try my hand at something new.
My new favourite yoga teacher (how quickly they change) talked tonight about the power of listening. Listening to ourselves is not mystical or magical, she said… knowing ourselves is fundamental. But to know ourselves, we must listen. Listen to our bodies. Listen to our feelings. Listen to our heart. And so I committed my practice to listening.
Now, in this moment, I am committing this whole season to listening. Listening to myself. Listening to others. Listening to the rain, which will be here soon. Listening for the wisdom, even in the silence. Even in my breath.
Once this particular teaching assignment is over, I’ll be dedicating my time to the next phase of my exploration. The plan is to write a series of articles for the Vancouver Observer covering “Gay Vancouver.” The V.O. editor has asked me to find out who and what is “hip, cool, and edgy” on the queer side of town – which, for those of you who know me, puts this assignment squarely into the realm of investigative journalism. (Okay, maybe I can pass for hip and cool on my good days, but edgy? Not so much.) I can’t wait to get started… not only will it be another great way to meet new people and see where those connections lead; it will also be the perfect opportunity to practice listening.