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« Get Going | Main | Breath: The Only Requirement »

while you aspire

Slow down. Pause. Breathe. That's my elixir to combat the "Life's passed me by. It’s too late to fulfill my destiny. Blues." Because I am my own enemy, I had to be taught how to save my own life. Now I practice filling my belly up with breath, have it expand, then flatten, every day. Attributing to what I call “connective breathing,” since it brings me inside of myself, for my increase in joy, clarity of thought and intention. If hope's an accurate barometer. I seem to be floating on air; all due to my breath.

For as we aspire, we live.  Coming to grips with I still do want, I ask for help. With some urgency. It's July, 2017. I need a vocal coach to help me prepare for my up-coming sixty-minute solo show. Written and performed by me, the dates,  November 14 and November 15, arriving sooner than I think. I know that. Which is why I'm having an anxiety attack. My energy's all over the place.

Showing up in my speech pattern. Words tumbling out one after another at a rapid clip. I feel like I'm headed for a nervous break down. Or maybe suffering from a pulmonary issue. I tell all this to my newly-hired vocal coach. She nods and says, "You're strong as an ox. Though you appear otherwise. It has all to do with your breath.You have to learn how to breathe. That's all and that's it. "

I'm in shock. If I don't breathe, how did I get here?    

She tells me. “You do breathe, but not to your full capacity. Hence your tension. You're a short, shallow breather. Meaning, you deny yourself access to your self by keeping breath inside your chest. Where it doesn't belong. From there your vocal folds in your neck, have litte chance to produce your natural voice.  Which we all have. For the voice is an acoustical instrument. With its own resonators, like nose, throat and mouth. Which we all possess in varying configurations, giving us our signature sound. I’m guessing, you've never heard yours. We're going to change that. Upping the odds you'll meet your destiny." 

I’m mesmerized. I am stuck. Stymied by how to free myself until I hear her say, "Be a conscious breather." Which becomes the jump-start in how I begin to change my life, by letting my breath into the lowest depths of my lungs. From there I wish my vocal folds luck. For I want to mesh my true voice with my true self. Whatever that means.

I start immediately. Moving my sole residency from inside my head, to all of me. Then I focus on my daily 20,000 plus breaths. My despair dissipates. As I picture words literally floating on the surface of that misty veil. Seeing my thought dependant upon my breath, I develop a plan how to conserve the finite amount I have. I think before I speak.  A complete game-changer. Alloting time to hone how to more expeditiously get to my point. Concluding, when there is none, say nothing. Let silence bring the meaning.

Breath soon assumes a legato tone, as I take stock.  Who and what is worthy of my breath. There's the issue. I must concetrate. Learn my script. I stay home alot. Then perform, standing straight, on my own two feet, breath inside of me from to head to toe. I never have the feeling I want to pass out.

I continue with my vocal coach. I write another script. "Til My Last Breath." Thirty minutes in length. Showing how going to Spain to learn Spanish helped me to breathe. It's a condundrum and the truth. And part of a solo works in progress festival. Produced by Artistic New Directions(AND) Theater Company. November 1. November 4 @ 7 PM. Shetler Studios Main Stage. Tickets: Facebook and Eventbrite.   

Leaving me presently rehearsing, and paying close attention to my head. I've vertigo. I have to avoid jerky movements. Which is a good thing. They do not belong on stage. This malady apprised by me, Saturday, September 8, at 6 AM. I open my eyes to a world that's spinning. As if I'm on a horse in an out-of-control merry-go-round. I take in the scene. Clinging to the sheets. Breathing.

Maladies ratchet up at my age. Tnen it passes, reappearing in the night and the next morn. I enter into my smart phone, "feeling dizzy, " concluding I've Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo. As does LeBron James. Showing me, money cannot buy a cure, I relax. See the doctor on Monday and he confirms. my assessment. 

He says, "It's slight. Not deleterious to your health. There's a loose crytal somewhere in an ear. Watch how you move your head." Hence my acute awareness. Knowing it's more than my head at the stake. I could receive a knock-punch and expire. 

Therefore,  while I aspire, I'm sticking my neck out and performing.    


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Reader Comments (10)

From a group from U. Wisconsin.
I ponder this looking at death too. Trying to live in the moment. Do something just for me everyday.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterMary Jane Clark

In the aspiring's the breath.
In the desire's the living.
The heart prompts the will.
We all suffer the same temporality.
Jane. .

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJane

Oh my gosh, I LOVE this post, Jane. As I read it, it re-reminded me to become more conscious of my breathing -- the one tool we have with us no matter what. Good for you! May your vertigo/ear crystal be very temporary. You inspire me.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterGail Mardfin

Part of our purpose: to inspire each other.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJane

Jane you amaze me and I learn about you and life each time you write. Your talent to turn your life events into a learning experience for all. Thank you..... Breath, live and enjoy every breath.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered Commenterjudyl

It's my intention. With you as a coach. And the scent of lavender helps.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJane

I am consiously breathing now - you’re right it changes the moment and stills the low pulsing panic of life. Break a leg in Nov - wish I could be there ❤️Xx

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterFizulu

I am definitely relate to your topic this month.
Retirement is more a "new game" in town and I
hope I'm winning!
Enjoy each day.
Bob and Jan

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterBob

Glad you are discovering how to live better. Looking forward to your show.

October 22, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

Your insightful writing leaves me breathless and in awe.

October 30, 2018 | Unregistered CommenterNetta Hart

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