I’ve been off the playa for almost a week, and I’ve had a few people ask me things like: What was your favorite thing you saw? Favorite experience? I’m struggling with how to answer that and felt obligated (in the moment) to give some kind of response.
It’s hard to sum up the total collection of thoughts and feelings I experienced on the playa into one moment in time. How do you measure a journey as a moment in time? How do you measure a rollercoaster of thoughts, energy, and emotion? I don’t have a simple answer because there isn’t a simple answer, all I have are a collection of learning lessons:
My body isn’t as flexible in extreme conditions. I knew this before living on the playa but I still tried to push myself regardless of my best instincts. I pushed myself into heat exhaustion on Tuesday and this almost cost me the rest of my burn. It took a few days of resting, recovery and a lesson to listen to what my body is telling me. If I’m too tired to dance or play then I probably need to cut back on activity and rest.
I like to be busy, I like to have a job, and I like to feel appreciated for my contributions. In fact, if I don’t feel appreciated I’ll (have a semi-breakdown and) move on to another job where I feel appreciated. Acceptance, and feeling welcomed by people is more important to me than I’d like to admit.
I will always be a work in progress. If I want to grow and improve myself, I have to surround myself with people who want to learn and grow as well. Following through with commitments, challenging thinking, and holding others accountable are traits that require giving energy (and require challenging passiveness). I’m learning to recognize people who are worth giving time and energy.
I’m starting to understand what being an empath means or at least understanding why my emotions can sometimes overwhelm me. I’ve always been very sensitive to feeling emotions in myself and in other people. When I was younger it was difficult to deal with the constant bombardment of emotion giving me panic attacks, clouding my ability to think (reason), or even speak to people. I’ve learned how to make sense of emotions in myself and others and recognize the “why” behind them. I’ve learned to recognize myself, at my core, and feel at home with myself. I value the ability to see people now.
For fun, here are some awesome memories:
Sunsets from the Firehouse.
Feeling present at all times (sorry Mom I couldn’t bring myself to take pictures but some friends of mine did manage to capture me).
Starlight walks and bike rides.
Watching storms roll over the playa, the chaos of dust storms.
Riding on top of the Shoe, wind blowing past me.
Chasing art cars on my bike. Playing chicken with an art car (they were not happy with me).
Disco fish dance party deep playa.
Hardware camp grinder show then deep playa adventures in the tool box!
Twirling on a lyra hoop under a fire breathing dragon.
Dance parties, fire spinning in deep playa.
Climbing, climbing, climbing higher!
Connecting with the most beautiful souls.
Working together and building a community.
Dancing in the Conclave then watching the man explode into an inferno.
Mimosa toasts with close friends.
The power of togetherness, and humanity’s connection.
The temple burn release.