Posts Tagged ‘Going to Burning Man Alone’

Keep the lights on

August 4, 2010

Wednesday, August 4

Silence interrupted.

Although I didn’t put my ticket up for sale, I was forced to admit to myself that not having a real friend to plan, get excited, nervous and ultimately adventure with was eclipsing the unimaginable experience. I didn’t want to go to Burning Man alone. I didn’t want to have to figure everything out for myself.  My mind created a perfect neurotic trifecta of defeat, fatigue and cowardice. All that research for nothing? Where else could I strut that fur coat? Where could I experience the extremes, the desert, the art and people and occurrences that were waiting to happen? I felt like I was wrestling with myself.

On top of that, rational and practical obstacles reared up. Not working full-time for six months has taken its toll and every dollar counts. Honestly, I was kind of relieved, now I could say, “Oh, yes, I was planning on going, but now I can’t afford it.” No one could argue with that, including me.

And so I sadly and gently closed the door to Burning Man 2010, but left a tiny jagged crack between fear and spirit to let in a glimmering sliver of light that would allow a solution, if there was one, to be illuminated.

And now less than four weeks away, I’m standing in a dazzling dappled patch of light.

After everything I’ve been through in the last 18 months; accepting and learning that some things will stay with me to be managed, the renewal process of being on the playa; however it happens is very symbolic to me. The excitement is building again. I’ve pulled out my lists.

I’m meeting with my potential new playa mate on Friday to talk it out. Yay light.

Fur Heart

May 25, 2010

Monday, May 24

There’s been a small but mighty battle between my head and my heart that took place in my belly. It started with a few conflicts, nothing more than slights and snubs that were easy to brush aside, but not to forget completely, they were just too small to dwell on.

My gut and all physical reactions are my true north; I can rely on the accuracy of their messages.

Especially now that my “last year” officially has ended, wrapped up and resolved, leaving me feeling very exposed and raw. The ordeal is finished. It gave me structure through the year, it’s how I lived. It required me to organize, work, heal, process and function in certain ways, outside the norm.

Now that structure has dropped and dissolved; I’m still here. That is a celebration. It’s also a little Rip Van Winkle when he woke, a little like being in a different but vaguely familiar foreign country, I can understand most of the language, but not all. I don’t really know anyone here. But I know myself. I feel a lot.

What’s awe inspiring is, it’s a whole new way. What’s frightening, is, it’s a whole new way.

The battle intensified last week. I chose not to fight although I was hurt.  In some ways I’m tough, in some I’m not. I want to connect, be truthful, joyful and kind. We sometimes don’t understand each other and have to fight to get there. When you’re with a friend there’s an implied safety. If you realize it’s not safe, you have to ask, what is the nature of our friendship? That’s what I asked.

I read a great quote the other day; if you can’t be kind, be vague.

After much thought and honest counsel, I made the decision to follow my heart. My bellyache disappeared instantly. I’m sad, but I did the honest thing.

Now, I’m on my way to Black Rock City, solo. That’s a little daunting for me. I’m not a camper, I have no stuff, I don’t know how to assemble a tent and now, no one to share the surrealness of getting there.

Now it’s even more of a journey for me, alone. Can I do this? Of course I can. Will I do this? I’m beginning my real research now.

I had dinner with friends of a friend the other night, and one of the new friends is a Burner, this will be his 7th, I think. He has been very generous to me with information and insights. He’s gentle and sensitive and also quite pragmatic and hilarious.

After talking a lot about costumes and accessories and always returning to fur (fake), and how I was hunting for it, he surprised me with this gift:

Not only do I love it and him for being so thoughtful and kind, I see it also as a talisman, as a sign that I made the right decision. And I’ll get this trip figured out so I can safely be a freak, celebrate, share, grieve, laugh, give and dance on the playa.