Bonita Applebum – Party for One

What are you waiting for?

What are you waiting for?

This weekend I was hanging out with a neighbor and fellow geek. We were talking tech  and I told him about the issues I was having with the live blog parties I was hosting last weekend. He said, in a very kind way, “I don’t really get the live blogging thing.” I laughed, “Yeah, I’m still exploring what it means myself.”

It’s nice to hear feedback.  Everything I’m doing makes so much sense to me, it’s fun to hear what others are making of it. Thinking about his comment, I realized what it looked like from the outside. I declared it a pre-party but I was the only person there. And for me, that is completely normal. But I probably should have mentioned to readers on the blog that I host parties for one all the time.

Party for One

For years, the divine Ms. Winfrey has talked about her  parties for one. I picture her walking through her house in elegant silk pajamas, carrying a large wine glass with a little bit of wine, with her gaggle of dogs following her from room to room. I love the idea that she could have a great time on her own any time she chose.  That she didn’t have to have others to have fun and being alone didn’t have to be a lonely time.

Oprah helped me see that time alone, doing what you love by yourself can be enjoyable and rejuvenating. You don’t have to have others around to enjoy yourself and you don’t have to  feel bad for not having plans. Instead, why not just have a grand time on your own? That’s what I was going for with the live blog party. I just wanted to celebrate with some music, stories and links.

Stop waiting for others – do what you love

I have always been a wicked, alone-in-my room  dancer. Most of the cd’s in my hip hop collection are devoted to the art of moving butts and  I have ALWAYS had kickin’ sound systems. Our current home? Well, suffice to say, Bonita’s got boom.  Both our living room and bedroom systems have big ole woofers that rattle the windows when I put some of my fav joints on. Once my jams get going, it is IMPOSSIBLE for me to stay in my seat. Plus, when I dj at home I play ONLY the songs I LOVE!

That’s why I put all my dancing videos on the blog. I know some people will think I look ridiculous, I don’t care. For every person who thinks I look silly, there is someone who thinks I look great. I want to inspire others to get up and dance like no one is watching. You can try moves you’ve only dreamed of. You can be as silly as you want. I keep it conservative when the camera is rolling because let’s face it, I’m old. And white. When I’m by myself and it’s a hellified rhythm, check it. I’m doing moves that burst forth from deep within my soul. Once,  back in my twenties,  I was dancing so hard by myself, I split my pants. It’s like I had gone into a some sort of dancing frenzy. Picture a cross between a Fly Girl and an extra from Rize.

Who cares what the world thinks? Music can fix my bad mood instantly and it’s a great workout. A pounding base line and shoulder roll seem to instantly release my heart and solar plexus chakras. It really helps with what ails me. And as you have seen, I’m having a great time over here, any time of day.

Time should be spent well

She's crafty.

She's crafty.

Everyone should have two or three things they do for stress relief and relaxation, yet so few of us pursue hobbies or interests. In addition to the music, these are activities that relax and uplift me.  I take biblical baths —  very long, very hot baths with dead sea salts (bought in bulk from the grocery store), aromatherapy and music to suit the mood. I love to read magazines, including Rolling Stone, Entertainment Weekly and Bitch. I read a handful of online blogs and comment on Jezebel which is an amazing online community. I have always been crafty,  I have many projects from over the years displayed throughout the house.

Very recently, I promoted myself from crafter to artist. This was a huge step for me, I’ve never taken my creativity seriously. I blogged about how I got myself art supplies for my birthday. Over the last few months, I have been playing with paints. This weekend, I played with pastels. My neighbor came over and we just colored and visited. My art is new and unsure, but the process gives me such pleasure. And playing with such vibrant bright colors makes me happy. My pictures are hung in my workspace so I can begin to see myself as an artist.

You are the captain of this ship

Taking care of myself is making me a better wife, mom and friend, but that’s not why I’m doing it. I’m doing it because I was miserable before, I felt like I was getting lost in motherhood and the responsibilities of life. I was giving until it hurt and then giving some more. There was nothing left for me and that left me resenting the people I loved most.

My happy place.

My happy place.

When it came to me taking risks I was so afraid of failure or looking foolish, that I wouldn’t even put myself out there. I have no time for any of that anymore. There is too much joy in trying new things and finding my authentic self. It is huge that I am putting my pastel pictures up, I’ve always been very insecure about my own art, as I imagine most people are.

I’m am new to self-care and having creative outlets, but it’s powerful medicine. I’m finding inner calm and a sense of well being for the first time in my life.

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