I was an acting and movement instructor. Before that a tennis coach and program director and an outdoor adventure company director and guide. An actor. A dancer. A director. A choreographer. A figure model. A bodyworker. A bioenergetic practitioner. All these I am's. All fun. All interesting. All had their challenges, successes and defeats or presumed failures. All beautiful and all the while wondering if it is going anywhere. I still wonder. And then this happened. I thought I knew where my life was going until I didn't. And I still don't though I am curious.
About 5 years ago I had a night when I had an experience that caused me to question everything. I was going through a depression when I witnessed one of my closest friends, a dog, stop eating. A dog named Willy. Or Prince William as he was often known. After 14 days of only having eaten a piece of salmon, his owner put him to sleep. I often wonder about that choice. Instead of killing him what if I would have taken him in. Would that have changed things? He was a sweet animal though he always looked so sad. He mostly stayed in the house all day long except to go out to shit and a weekly hike. One that, once the car would get to a trail head and stop, he would bark like crazy. I took him in for about 2.5 months and we got pretty tight. I was sleeping in my studio at the time trying to save money so the school could prosper. Not the most exciting living conditions though it also felt like home. I stayed there for almost 2.5 years. No shower, kitchen, no clean running water, just a huge warehouse and an inspiring creative space where I could explore and create anything I wanted. It was such a beautiful studio. Hughes of blue and green filled the space, with exposed brick, warm lights and a faux wall, while 5 layers of passionate streaks of a wood faux dawned the ceiling while soft wood plastic floors concealed the cement and old below. I was given the perfect space to create and all I did was help others live their dreams perhaps avoiding my own or living with some hidden belief that I wasn't worthy of mine.
That studio was my home in more ways than one. A home for the craft, a home for my rage a I witness my neighbour who we had hired, undermine the program and take our students away from us while serving them lies about us and our program while we helped him avoid bankruptcy. A space to explore the world of voiceover, camera work, movement and dance. A place to explore truth. All of it without apology or hesitation. A home for the soul to remember itself and explore all of its expressions and the limitless imagination in all of us. I miss that home. My goal was always to empower students to be able to take that kind of freedom into the world and live their dreams whatever they may be. Little did I know I was also trying to do it for myself as well. Desperately and passionately not wanting anyone else to not live their dreams. For it is why we are here. Back then I felt like I had a purpose. I had a reason to live. To be here. It was something that helped me feel alive. Every time I taught I felt a part of myself I had forgotten. I felt that every time I was in the William Esper Studio with my teachers. A studio that I called home that our program was modelled after.
Yet I didn't bring it into the world. Instead I created a program that highlighted all of my weaknesses and strengths and did very little to take advantage of it. Instead just fighting it all along the way. For 5 years I could have trained with my instructors and stepped into my own dreams. Not even realising until after I left that I had created something that could have helped me with my dreams as much as anyone else's as well as everything in the way of them. I was just too blind to see. So we practically gave it away and now it looks more like a trash heap than anything. I guess that is the difference when you build something from scratch and then someone just takes it over without any connection to the amount of heart and passion and play that was put into the creation of a project. And I wasn't a vulnerable enough father of it to take care of its transition into another person's hands or nourish a transition of it for ourselves. The program was clearly heading somewhere else. The moment I started seeing the student manifest what they were creating in the classroom manifest in their lives I knew we had to reassess something. It's when I started to realise that acting created a blueprint for the soul and to live and create the life you always wanted. The one we came here for. yet confusion ensued and I allowed myself to get pulled, out of fear, to Portland, OR for a relationship and then to take time with my mother. All of it was priceless yet sometimes I just wonder. It sent me on an incredible adventure that felt like and continues to feel like the Odyssey.
As I sit here now I wonder again what matters. Over the last 5 years countless metaphysical and magical experiences have happened to me causing me to question reality as I knew it and also to reprioritise my life. Suddenly a lot of what mattered, no longer did. Now I'm sitting in the space of wondering if anything matters.
When I saw that dog's eyes that day as I was working with him he just sat there sweetly looking at me letting me do whatever I needed to him. There was a block with adoration, affection, and anger. At least that what I remember. though as I was looking at him I wondered what I was saving him for? To eat, shit and go for a weekly hike? and who the fuck was I to even save anyone. Since when does anyone else play god or are we all God? Then it hit me that I was also on a merry-go-round though mine felt somehow more free. Disguised with fancier whistles, bells and shinny pieces. I was just like him. And then wondered if he was just reflecting me back to me with my own beliefs and blocks. I didn't know. Though it set me into a deep depression. After that night nothing would ever be the same. That was 5 years ago and after an incredible and challenging 5 years I have found myself, in many ways back where I started, perhaps even more lost. Yet I know that also creates the space for something else to be found in the void. The act of releasing the lifeboat, when we realise we are the lifeboat. A moment when we trust enough that the desire to truly live is more powerful than waiting to die. It just brings up the question. Why am I here and does any of it even matter? What is the point in anything? I've been shown a different way. A way I know not what to do with yet. A way that makes me feel like this is all BS because it is all love. so why the fuck are we here and what do I do with all that I have seen? Who am I really? Who is anyone? I feel like I have been shown answers to all of that though I know there is more. There has to be. We are here to live. To truly live. I create and live our dreams and write love endless stories and share them to inspire more worlds and the endless possibilities of man and the universe. Though what now? Now I just wait. Because, as William Esper always said, something will happen. Moments of silence. That was always the most challenging exercise for me to teach and do/be in. Perhaps this time I'll get it.