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A Two-Act Play in a Flash
Image by Ahmad Odeh
‘A Tornado Swirling Herself In and Out of Form’
The table is set for four. Candles lit. Jazz music playing in the background.
It was a few years back, we were sitting at dinner, a regular evening chatting about life,, the week, how things are for each of us. We were laughing and teasing each other in the familiar way we do. I can’t remember what I said, something about my yoga students, something about me. I remember being grumpy that day. That week? My daughter, 11 at the time, turned to me, “Yeah, but Mama, we know the real you.”
The actors freeze.
She was so spot on.
Her words have stayed with me for years now.
It’s the simple moments, those one-off statements that linger in the mind and replay in our memory. The real me? Is there a real me? “Who am I?” Who knows which side of me? Which sides do I know? How am I blind to myself?
“Yeah, but Mama, we know the real you.”
It is important to attend to identity. To look at who we are, how we act, and how we all show up in the world. It is equally important to let go all of that and rest in the not- knowing.
Here is my attempt to answer the ‘impossible ever-changing in its becoming’ question.
To be read like a twister starting from where it hits the earth in its spiralling chaos, then up around and around outwards until it is no longer a twister. Only space. Then back again. Down around and around inwards to where I hit the ground spinning, into the I (eye) of stillness.
Who am I? A Tornado swirling herself in and out of form.
white woman born in middle class Vancouver,
living in middle-class Germany. A mother of two. A wife.
A daughter. A sister. A friend. Mostly straight, a little queer.
A yoga and meditation teacher and student. A life artist. A seeker.
A creative being. A funky wild sexy creature. A dedicated hardworking person.
A person who wants to be better. Who works on herself to be kinder, smarter, healthier, fitter, kinder, smarter, healthier, fitter, kinder … A person tired from all the trying but afraid if I stop I will turn into a cruel lazy fat unlovable monster. I am a sensitive, emotional being. Someone who has needs, can be very needy, who looks for praise, recognition, love. A woman insecure about her body, mind, worth. A woman ashamed of being insecure. A woman willing to be with her shame. I am with fear, with anger, with grief, with hate. I am the body and psychic inheritance of all my ancestry. I am trying to un-blind myself on what it means to be white, all of the privileges I have had, have, and take for granted. I am willing to see, to know, to apologise, to reconcile. I am a human grappling with our/my climate crisis, our/my fear, with my/our cruelty, my/our greediness. I am a person with faith who looses it only to have a friend return it. I am with wisdom, with compassion, with joy. I am a lover of people, places, of moments of beauty, of nature, of the heavens and the earth, of life. I am a child. A wise old woman. A butterfly. A daisy. A dragonfly. A dragon. I am spacious and free.
I am a tornado swirling herself in and out of form.
I am Life. I am Death
– Less –
Form swirling herself out and into a tornado.
Freed and Spacious. A dragon dragonfly. A daisied butterfly. A wise old child. Loved by life, the earth and heavens, by nature, by beauties of moments and places and people. Enjoyed, cared for and held in wisdom. Faith returned. Faith lost. Greedy, cruel, fearful. Crisis climate grappling. Reconciling, apologising, knowing, seeing, unblinding myself from my whiteness. Ancestry inherited in psychic bodily form. Hating. Grieving. Angry. Fearing. Holding my ashamed insecurities. Treasuring my worth, my mind, my body. Recognising my neediness. Loving my emotional sensitivity. Monster unlovable tired of turning into kinder, fitter, healthier, smarter. Better wanted hardworking person. Dedicated sexy wild funky creature. Being creative. Seeking life’s art through meditating and yoga-ing. Queerly straight. Befriended.
Sistered. Mothered. Beloved.
The stage is empty. I am on stage still continuing. Still becoming. Still swirling. Still knowing. Still not knowing. Still me.
Erinbell Fanore was born and raised in Vancouver, Canada. She holds a Bachelors of Theatre from York University (Toronto), Canada and a Masters of Theatre from University College Cork, Ireland. Erinbell is also a 500 hours Yoga Alliance certified yoga teacher. She has been teaching yoga and meditation full time since 2007. www.yinyogaberlin.de