It’s hard to stay present right now. I either feel vaulted into the future at warp speed, accompanied by a mounting sense of doom, or find myself lamenting over opportunities lost, longing for how it was in those golden (?) “Before Times”. And yet I know from experience (in my meditation classes) and from the wisdom of others (thanks, Brené Brown, Jon Kabat-Zinn and Pema Chödrön) that the only moment in which I have any influence or choice is right now.
These past almost-two-years have been so challenging for so many of us. The struggle has been universal, although of course it has disproportionately affected the already-disadvantaged so much worse than the rest of us. But for artists, the pain and loss has been elemental, existential. The very thing we love and live to do has been taken from us, then tantalizingly offered in part, then snatched away again. For singers, it’s sometimes felt even deeper, because for a while there, we were really seen as the personae non grata of the arts world, spreading our icky aerosols throughout the air around us.
So here are a few thoughts from where I currently stand:
- There are many ways I can express myself artistically and emotionally; singing is only one of them
- Singing can take many shapes and forms, and no one can stop me from singing for myself
- There is much to be learned in this time of reflection, including the many ways in which my privilege has excluded others, considering the relevance to larger society and community of what I do, how to make a bigger impact with the art that I produce and create, and how to bring solace and connection through music and artistic pursuits
The power we individually and collectively possess as artists packs a punch. It’s the POW in power. And the most potent time is always the moment we are in right now. So let’s own it. Let’s live fully in this moment and consider how we can best use it for the greater good. Fear not, for the power is now.