“Art is the act of triggering deep memories of what it means to be fully human.” ~ David Whyte
“Changes” according to A Passion For Jazz refers to the chords or progressions of a tune. ‘Playing’ or ‘running’ the changes means using suitable scales, etc., over each given chord of the tune. Determining the exact changes to use is a big part of preparing a tune for performance. Metaphorically changes refer to the choices that we make to create and give structure to our lives. I woke up this morning and realized that changes are the only constant in life. A willingness to continue running and playing with these changes affects how it feels to be fully human. I am trying to remain calm when living and thriving beyond my Breast Cancer diagnosis and the complications that arise along the way. Stress makes the experience torturous and quite unpleasant and disquieting. Every day can change some good and some not so good. I cannot afford to be afraid. It is necessary for my daily improvisational practice to have faith that whatever comes into my life, I will breathe so that I can tap into my soul and find the rhythm for me to live, love and expand. Breast Cancer is my third Game Changer not counting getting older!
I selected Lee Ritenour’s A New Day because it reinforces and embraces the concept of accepting as well as the actualization of living a fully liminal life. Give a listen. When I listen intentionally it takes me back and reminds me of It’s a Wonderful Life this black and white classic captures the paradox that seems contradictory but reveals a truth. Joy and sorrow are contradictory emotions but if you think about they both require passion (just like love & hate). Gibran wrote “Your joy is your sorrow unmasked. And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears. And how else can it be? The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.” We all live in this paradox. We must have sorrow to allow the grace of joy and serenity. The change is that knowing this truth opting to accept both feelings.
I am looking forward to seeing life through a rearview mirror. Allowing my memoir to take form gives me an immense sense of hope, faith and forgiveness. Improvisation facilitates changes. Learning to write according to my temperament is a heady experience. I have found what works for me in each present moment. It gives our sensibilities to feel alive and energized. Besides hearing the song my father wrote for me endlessly playing in the back of my mind, it reminds me of hearing my father’s voice saying you are too sensitive making me feel like it is some grand defect. Fear pierces the veil running its course distorting and translating those words to mean, you’re not good enough, you’ll never get it. Change is life’s mainstay. Perfection, fear and change cannot occupy the same space. So, this past week I opted for change. Life has become way more fun, open and I accept the imperfections because they are part of the process. The discomfort creeps in particularly a fear of sailing into uncharted waters. Now it serves as a gentle reminder evoking me to be creative. Letting go of disappointments and how things were, no matter how fractured things may seem, is not an easy task. It takes a ginormous amount of energy and courage to let go because it is an inside job. It instills grace. Grace to forgive myself and others, to let go of ideas of who I am or should be and how I think things and others should be. Surrendering and replacing my old negative thoughts with hope, love and freedom. Change happens whether I choose to be a part or not. This has been the most exhilarating week. So bring on the past memories. Either way I am blessed. I have battened down the hatches in preparation for the Tsunami that is approaching! Kind words and prayers are welcome. In the midst of cleaning my personal space these thoughts are floating through my mind preparing me for what Joel Osteen refers to it as “Your Season” and with that comes a process that we all must get though with a sense of timing and rhythm that will prepare you for the life you want.
P.S. Every one of us needs to identify the things we don’t understand. When things come up that are confusing, frustrating or you can’t figure out; that is when patience and breathing will allow the changes to manifest. The New Year is a perfect time to make it a part of your daily improvisational practice repertoire. Let go of old frustrations and the negative voices that are running through your mind. Let go of the bitterness and resentment and choose to feel as though it is a new beginning. Don’t put a question mark where God and the universe have placed a period. Trust that all is good. Trust that the universe is conspiring to working things out for the greater good. Keep breathing, believing, meditating and hoping for the future. Let go of the things and people who didn’t work out in 2014 and gear up for the new season that God and the Universe has in store for you in 2015! Peace & Love Out! Happy Nu Year! JBC 😎 & ❤
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