Well, as you may have noticed, it has been a while since I last made a blog post. In that time, I have been knocked out sick twice, been to New Orleans and am currently about to finish my time in Houston, TX. My body is in open revolt, my tummy still aches from the last round of sickness caused by food poisoning, my head has been light headed and I have just generally feeling out of it. I know that some of this is the result of a demanding travel schedule but I do not think that accounts for all of what I feel. In fact, I am fairly certain that the root of all of my troubles is a large amount of fear about my return to Austin, TX.
It has been six years since I spent any significant time around the Flipside community and when I left, there was a large touch of drama in the air (although not directly related to me, I was a part of it). Several of my closest relationships had crumbled because of it and I started to withdraw from the community. Additionally, I was starting a new intimate relationship at the same time that would eventually lead to marriage and my second divorce. Because of all of these factors, returning to Austin is requiring that I do some soul searching that I was not aware still needed to be worked through.
I am intentionally being vague about the specifics of the situation because they are not important. In fact, I am hoping that we can all put them behind us. I have moved on in my life and I want to reconnect with so many of the people that I called my family while I lived in Austin. I am a little blown away by how much fear I have been holding onto about this trip. So much fear, that I have been unable to reach out and make arrangements for dinners and interviews. So much fear, that I have been making myself sick and keeping myself from moving forward with the film. I just had not realized that I was still carrying so much shame. Where did that word come from? Shame of the fact that I abandoned so much when I left, that I did not fight harder to keep my friends, that I left my family, that I ended up sacrificing so much of myself. For this, I forgive myself but there is a lot here that I am just now starting to peel back but the mere fact that I am doing the peeling is a good thing. I just hope it is not too late to be able to see the people I need to see while I am in Austin. That I can start to build the bridges that will repair the friendships that I still cherish so deeply and miss so much.
The Flipside community was my introduction to the Burning Man culture and world. Being a part of that community brought out some incredible changes in me that has made me the person I am today and for that I will be forever grateful. I learned how to become a true leader through my experiences in that community and I learned how much an ego can wreck havoc on one’s soul. I have grown so much since my first visit to Pyropolis when I was the bouncing blue boy filled with such excitement at finally finding the rest of the freaks. I knew I wasn’t alone all those years and to finally have found Home was amazing. I just hope that the people that watched my grow into the woman I have become will still be able to welcome me home.