When in Doubt: Go out.
Sometime in late June of 2017, I was having a particularly poor week. The kind of week you can't help but feel sorry for yourself. You know what I'm talking about, "Summer-time sadness." This is usually due to something within my control like the amount of sleep I get, the number of times I exercise, or bad-planning. Mind you - this was all before I discovered that I needed boxing in my life. That week itself was the culmination of what seemed like a stream of endless disappointments and failures. In the entertainment industry, what I chose to do with my life, there seems to be a stream of endless rejections and very few successes. It doesn't seem like it's worth it at times - but I love it. That hot summer night, I needed an adjustment in my attitude. And of course, as it goes, I didn't know what kind of adjustment I was looking for or even needed until it happened.
One of my dear friends, a talented songwriter/artist/musician, asked if I wanted to go see a few of his favorite bands at Mercy Lounge/The High Watt and of course I said yes. Who refuses that? Music always lifts my spirits. I hadn't been to a live show in a few weeks and that's a long time for someone who lives in a city where you could go out every night and enjoy really great live music.
We grabbed margaritas (much needed) before heading over to the show. We stood in line for about 30 minutes catching up on life, realizing we hadn't stood in line for something in awhile, and discussing dreams. The doors opened to Mercy Lounge and I could feel my heart already lifting as our hands were stamped and we stepped foot in the low-lit and misty atmosphere. That pre-show conversation birthed anew some hope within me. Listening to his hopes and plans helped me think of a future where there were more possibilities than disappointments and regrets. I knew I was in a good place. From the opening act to the headliner the performance level was jaw-dropping. Blank Range opened with performances of tracks from their album Marooned With the Treasure, for the ever-retro-pushing and eccentric performer Daniel Romano, and they did not disappoint. Daniel Romano gave a sizzling performance as he belted tunes from his album Mosey and danced around to a few more from Modern Pressure. In the presence of musicians devoted to their craft the majority of their lives, who also wouldn't have it any other way, I was reminded of their sacrifice. Everyone at that show was having a blast and that is what really matters. I could turn to someone and comment on the show and they were receptive and would start up a conversation.
Going out reminds us that we need to connect with people. To cut loose and remember that having a drink and listening to music is good for our soul. And I do not mean going to the nearest karaoke bar and getting 'lit'. No. That's for a weekend in your twenties when it's cool to drink cheap beer, get super tipsy and sing along to the sappy and cliche ballads of the early 90's - which I, of course, never did (*cough*). But maybe that is your cup of tea. ;)
The point is to go out and be in the midst of what you love to bring a little life and lift to your attitude. Whatever that is, and without apology. I've learned that life is just way to short to be so careful and apologetic about doing what you love (if it is not good for you, however, I would give pause!). If you love poetry and want to write it all the time - figure out how to do it all the time. Just try, or you'll never know if you could have. No dream is crazy. Your call.
The majority of my friends are those who create, love being around creatives, and need to be creating on a regular basis to feel purpose and feel that they are serving humanity. I am lumped in with that group and therefore, when in doubt, I will go out to submerge myself in the experience of a live show, gallery opening, farmers market, acting class, or pottery lesson. Whatever. Seize the moments you have and spend them with those that inform your soul! Connections, relationships, family, and love are what we need to survive. That and for me, it's regular meditation, prayer and good sleep (more on this in future posts!) So, thank you to my dear friend who said, "you're going out tonight and watching this band and having a beer. No argument."
Shake off the bad, put on the good. - HL