Lillith updated the other day, and so I guess now it's my turn. Thank you all so much for the posts, reposts, tweets, shares, networking, blogging, etc. To know that our communities can create such a big chunk of change in such little amount of time is so inspiring. There are really no words to describe the power behind that kind of love.
If you will, please help me keep the momentum up. I launched this site only a week ago, and I've always been better at starting things than maintaining them. If you have any contacts with the press (or Ellen!), or if you know of different places to post this that I haven't tried, please don't hesitate to let me know. (Or contact/post in those places yourself!)
Also, if you can, please join us on June 11th at the Tuesday Tease show at Sue Ellen's. This is the show, along with the Academy of Queerlesque, created and developed by Lillith. We have the honor of giving back to her next week. More details will come, but I want you to put that on your calendar ASAP!
I love you all, lots and lots,
A Message From Lillith
I'm really speechless. Skye launched this campaign not even 24 hours ago, and the response has been overwhelming, to say the least. Making that video was really hard for me, and after it was posted I cried a lot and second-guessed myself quite a bit. I wondered what people would think of me, I wondered if anyone would notice, and I honestly wondered how I was going to be able to hold my head up after everyone saw me so vulnerable. Not because I am ashamed of asking for help (although it was decidedly more difficult than I anticipated), or because I am embarrassed about the situation. I'm not really sure what it was about - I processed a lot last night with people close to me, trying to figure out why I was feeling so raw about it, but didn't really come up with much. My emotions are all tangled up.
This morning I couldn't even look at my phone - every time a donation came through, my gut clenched and I fought back the urge to say no, thanks, please don't put yourself out. All I want to do is help people, and it feels like by accepting money I am doing the opposite. Throughout the day, though, as I've read the comments and reasons people are donating and posting and spreading the word, I'm realizing that maybe by accepting help, I am actually helping others too. I'm trying to focus on the broader scope of my work - it was never supposed to be about me anyway, so who am I to reject participation by others? Why wouldn't I welcome everyone? I love all of you so much, and I'm deeply honored to share this with you.
I'm trying to take it easy on myself. There's a lot of other stuff going on my life right now too, so really, any little thing sends me over the edge these days. I've been feeling pretty lonely, although that is rapidly changing as I'm faced with such overwhelming love. I've been struggling with the move in general - I feel like I've been trying to get out of Texas my whole life, and now that it's happening I only want to be here. I am so happy here, working on shows, teaching classes, doing all the things I love doing. I can't bear to leave, even for a year. I don't want to be away.
I have to be out of the Glitter Box by tomorrow, so I've been packing and moving and sweating and cussing a lot over the last week. It's hard to figure out how to pack - if I'm couch surfing in Miami, I can't take much of anything. If I'm going to find a place, will it be furnished or unfurnished? Do I pack for a month? Six months? How do I get stuff there - ship it? Strap it on top of my tiny car? I still don't know. I'm kind of shooting for middle ground, leaving most of my stuff in storage and marking boxes "miami for sure" and "miami maybe." I have a place to stay for the first few weeks - it's about an hour away from Miami, but it's free, so I'm not complaining. Once I get there, I feel like I'll have better luck finding a place, then I guess I'll make more decisions. Thanks to all of you, I no longer feel terrified that I might end up with nowhere to go. I know, at the very least, that I will be able to find something, and I won't starve.
The universe seems to be taking care of things, in many different ways. I was out with friends last weekend, right after the financial aid fiasco, and I was feeling really depressed and defeated. I almost didn't go (I tend to hibernate when feeling blue) but I'm glad I did, because I happened to meet two really amazing and beautiful people who just moved here from Miami. They have already started connecting me to their social groups and other resources, so I feel like I won't be quite so alone when I get there. I have also heard from some of the other interns that will be working with me, so I'm hoping maybe one will want a roommate. These little bursts of "coincidence" are incredibly inspirational.
My faith has been boosted not only by the donations, but by the words of encouragement, the emails and texts and posts, the way people have gotten behind this. I guess I didn't realize that people felt this way about me - I've just sort of done the work I feel called to do, and privately hoped I've reached people, but it seems like a lot more people believe in me than I realized. I'm so deeply moved by the response, and it's helping me remember that this endeavor is more than a personal goal - it really is for everyone, and it seems like everyone wants it too. (jeeez I'm getting teary again).
I think this experience is more than just getting money. When I expressed my fears and emotional mayhem to one of my closest friends, she reminded me to pay attention to the lesson I'm supposed to be learning. At face value, the lesson seems to be about humility, about asking for and accepting help. But I think there's more to it than that....I'm realizing so many things about the value of community, about the impact of generosity (both generosity of spirit and generosity of the tangible). I'm realizing that I've been focused on the end result, the finish line, but it turns out the work has been valuable all along.
Every donation, every post, every tweet takes my breath away. I've been breathless all day. I've been crying from sorrow for so long, crying from relief and joy is a welcome change. I cannot possible express how full my heart feels, how safe and cared for and nurtured I feel. There are literally no words to explain how I feel. I'll keep trying, though.
Thank you. For real, thank you.