This blog is not about the Jazzfest, but my life.
For those who know me or of me, there have been some rumors going around about me leaving Ohio. THIS IS TRUE. I have actually wanted to leave for some time now for a multitude of reasons, but mainly my industry career needs to be planted in a place that lends room for a little more diversity based on availability, and my health with regards to the winters.
When I say diversity, I mean that I am not the box that I have been tagged in, and there is more acceptance of that. Now, that is not a blast to anyone so don’t take it that way. But I am boxed in. More than once, I have gotten an apology from someone that said “wow, I forgot you sing. I know you as a Poet, or vice versa”. I’m quite simply an artist. I sing. I paint [yep!]. I make Jewelry, and I have some culinary and design skills under my belt – have been a seamstress since my twenties.
And I am also a writer, as some are seeing for the first time with our magazine and the Jazzfest blogging. I am blessed to have these outlets and very thankful to God for placing incredible people around me who have encouraged these gifts, mainly my business partner Reginald Ford and super friend Trissa Chaney, and total jewels Jasmine Sanders and Janice Williams. Naturally there are more, and because I have lived a lot of places and worked in a lot of different art forms, there are far too many to mention. I listed these 4, because they are strength additions to the next chapter of my life and daily, just knowing that they are available to me for encouragement, prayer, wisdom, and a laugh is the best motivation I could have!
I would encourage each of you that have a dream to seriously take inventory of it. See where it is going and what is needed. Sometimes, we are the reason it is stagnant. Other times, it has not germinated yet because God has not finished planting and soiling around it so that it can grow strong. Be open to change and additions. And subtractions. I have had some very difficult conversations recently with some of my artsy friends. Some were for the best in that they [and myself] have shifted to a point of growth. Others, sadly, I know in my heart went in one ear and out the other. That is a serious thing. There are not many these days who will even take the time to say a full sentence to us, let alone share of their wealth of knowledge. I take no offense, I hold no ill will. I move forward as I am directed and should they come alongside in this next phase they are welcome. If not I thank God for the experience of knowing them. [and yes, that is a them. Plural.]
A good friend of mine, D Nova, gave me the best piece of advice I could have ever had in my entire life when it comes to the shift I needed to make at that point. And it hurt. And I was angry. But looking at now, after having applied these words, it was a necessary cut to my skin. Has someone tried to do that for you? If so, really look at what they did, and why. If there is room for it to be an opportunity for growth, it may be worth the pain. It was for me.
I only have 2 1/2 more weeks here, then I will be leaving. I don’t know who I will get to see, or when. I have to be mindful of the time and put my family first, because they are the ones I am leaving first. If I will be out, I will post something. And if you see me, I’m not a super hugger, you all know that. So please don’t be offended if I don’t let you squeeze me [lol]. Do however high-five and atta girl me if it’s in your heart to do so. That is the best hug you can give.
Love and Kises
Neo aka Auntie [you know who you are]