As I came out of the room (the womb), the corridor (the pathway), I enter an unknown world, an unknown new body – with a heavy head. I had cold feet, and as I discovered my kinesphere, I clumsily but yet delicately walked forward. Early in my path I realized that this walk would be one filled with struggle, pain and fear; but also one full of nuances. I realized that it was just a matter of perspective and focus. I could take all my attention to breathing, and just focus on the air coming in and out.
The first moments of life outside, I realized that all my community (my performance family) was present. I knew I was safe. This was a moment of celebration of life, expression and womanhood. The big gesture of taking up the streets, unapologetically taking up space awakened some and invited some deep thinking: “What are you doing?” some would ask. The tape on my mouth ease my preoccupation to feel some kind of pressure, that I needed to answer these big questions for them. Easy answers, or fed answers is what we sometimes expect, avoiding the need to do the work and go deep. The slowness of our movements, as opposed to our fast-paced lives permitted people to anchor to these questions for some time and reflect on it, on life.
My first steps allowed my to discover my pace, my rhythm- my heartbeat, my breath. I felt my blood flow rushing to my fingers and my toes, warming up the body. Each cell awakened to understand the present as it was on October 12th, 2018 – 12 pm.
I turned around eager to meet someone, but with my pace in mind, but the cold in my bones rushing me to get there already. I was a bit early, and the idea of waiting was introduced. How do you wait for someone? Uncertainty. Where they ever showing up. Trust. The moment I was able to perceive Monique with my body, I was at ease. The waiting became pleasurable. And then I saw her. I felt her warmth, and somehow I felt we were communicating psychically from that point. No verbal communication needed, our cells were in-synced.
As time progressed, and we cycled through the streets I realized the difficulty of being in the south side. The cold was intense and would tense all my body, making my breath very shallow and giving me an intense desire to be in the other side of the street. But as I focused on breathing deeper and slowing down, I realized the opportunity I was giving my self to understand sensation without preconceptions and giving my partner to enjoy the sunny side. I was happy for her, and in some manner her warmth became mine too. I was there for her, and she was there for me. Our paths would cross and in some way we would change our circumstances. But we would still be there for one another.
As I reached the point were we where about to change sides, the walk became hard – the wind started blowing intensely and I had to fight in order to understand the other, to go to the “other’s side”. The headpiece became a sail that would pull me back. And as if the whole patriarchal, heteronormative system was pulling me back, my desire to meet a strong woman kept me going. My necessity to express and communicate myself pushed me harder than the string around my neck.
We crossed paths, and as we did there was a complicity into looking at Monique’s eyes. She knew what was coming, and so did I. We trusted the choreography and allowed it to take us further. The journey was full of sunny patches amongst the shadows, if ups and downs and cyclical activity, of pulling and pushing. As I entered the sunny side, the pull became a push. I felt all the women that came before me pushing me to keep going.
More of us appeared and I realized I am part of something bigger, a bigger movement, a bigger fight. Crossing paths with all of you was so exciting and filled me with life inside. As if my cells where bouncing inside my, keeping me warm and invigorated – my outside appearance reflected how appeased and calm I was to be sharing the space with these women.
I wanted to share/warned with/about you what was coming, my body did. But my silence allowed yo/ to experience the path openly, anew.
I loved seeing how the costume responded to forces working upon us, but we were rooted and solid as trees. I loved the moment when I saw women being, the hand gestures open, generous and giving, the reading and bringing forth those that have positively impacted us in some way. I loved the gathering and walking together.
The moment we united and stopped for a very long while, re-emerging from our experiences, from our pain, from our love to just be. Our silences were loud.
We are here.
We are here.
We are here.