It’s a little ironic that I haven’t written since my Writer’s Conference. I guess you could say I’ve been on sensory overload these past few weeks, working from a frantic mode more than anything else, and feeling a sense of overwhelm—
in my bones,
in my forehead,
in my shoulders,
in my toes,
in my tummy.
It’s this weird sense of overwhelm that I can’t exactly put my finger on; it’s the going and going, and even though it’s the going and going of things I love, it still has the weight of bricks on my chest, of constriction and angst. It’s not that the Conference didn’t inspire me, but rather that it seeped into my system and I’ve given it little-to-no time to digest. Instead, all the feelings and insights and “a-aha!” moments of that weekend are still stirring inside—undirected, clumped together, searching for something, somewhere, someone to cling on to.
Just last night I was in yoga and the teacher started talking about this feeling of weird overwhelm, almost exactly how I described it above. She, herself, had been experiencing it and then she discovered that many others were as well and apparently, in her circle of understanding, this collective sense of overwhelm is attributed to the new year, the year of transition, and the intense energy of the universe. Going with this idea she then explained how the intense energy of the universe gets jolted or somehow zapped into us and remains sort of stagnant or captured I guess you could say, thus causing a sense of intense overwhelm. Trapped cosmic energy zapping our systems—consuming, draining, an overthrow. Now, to be honest, I’m not quite sure if I buy into all this energy zapping jolt jargon, but intuitively, it makes sense. I feel a lot of energy needing to be released, be it through yoga or writing or hiking. I can really feel the drain of the constant going and going of my life, of the American life really. And even if it’s the going and going of things I love, my body, my soul crave to remain still just for a moment, to really feel at ease and present, to be able to soak it all up, to not be dictated by the pull of the going and going…and going and going.
I’ve gotten a fair amount accomplished these past few weeks—that tends to happen to us going and going folks—I finished my law class, a brutal quarter indeed, spent mostly in the coffee shop. With endless hours spent sipping coffee and procrastinating I discovered that Java Station has game night every Thursday where adult nerds come out and play. For some odd reason it made me really happy to see their sense of community centered around their collective interest around games that I had never heard of before, like Game of Thrones, Dungeons & Dragons, and Settlers of Catton. These mini-communities of “outsiders” coming together and finding a place to belong, a space to be their authentic nerd-selves, is what made me smile. For the past few Thursday nights I have been the outsider, sitting quietly in the corner and typing away, people-watching. It might sound weird, but I feel most at home when I am in these situations, when I am sort of an “outsider”—that’s one of reasons why I love to travel so much.
Speaking of mini-communities, last night I went to a slam poetry reading at the Coffee Cat put on by UCSB’s Multicultural Center. Slam poet, Kelly Zen-Yie Tsai, performed her amazing poetry and transported me back a few years to my time as an undergrad at UCBerkeley where it seemed like impromptu slam poetry readings would pop up all over campus. It was rejuvenating to be in community again with students, with the felt-sense of passion and eagerness to learn, to understand, to unite, and ultimately, to come together and change the world. These mini-communities of gamers and slam poets, yogis and writers, inform me in unique and subtle ways; bridging communities, creating allies.