August: Joy

Are you ever resistant to your own Joy?
I am.

Like last week I had a whole bunch of excuses why not to go to the Celebrate Brooklyn. (Long day, kind of bummed, list of stuff to do, cranky baby, it’s already so late, long lines…)

And then I had to give myself a gentle but stern talking to and remind myself that joy is the point, now get up and GO.

Long story short, I got to dance my butt off to Angelique Kidjo’s Celia Cruz tribute while my 18 month old son danced his shuffle under the stars. We were one of last ones to leave. I walked home slowly with my dear friend pushing a stroller under the magical spell of a Brooklyn Summer night.

True story:

My middle name is Gay.
When I was a kid, I would get teased regularly by kids under the spell of homophobic foolishness.
My parents told me to tell them, “Gay means happy and I’m happy so there.”
I claimed it on the spot, even started including my middle name with my first as if I was from down South and not Evanston, Illinois.
It served me well and I still claim it.

Gay is your name too. Joy is your birthright too.

Especially when there is far more foolishness than schoolyard mockery happening in this world.
There’s a whole lot to be mad and angry about right now.
I’m not going to make a list because that’s not what this post is about.
This post is about dancing in the ashes or for no reason at all because, we still can.

Joy is this month’s Astrology.
Social media knows it. #BlackJoy is trending and it’s no accident.
Joy must be intentionally called upon as a weapon of self-preservation.

My favorite entrepreneurial blogger knows it. I got this #truthbomb in my inbox yesterday:

You can get fired, dumped, dumped on, and pulled through the eye of a needle, and still feel held by the container of joy — the truth of your existence.

The astrological forecast this month by Virginia Rosenberg is once again spot on – like how’d she crawl into every nook and cranny of my present reality only to express it more poetically than I ever could yet again?

She writes:

What is joy?

July had us Embracing Emotion. Is joy an emotion?

On the surface, it may appear as such. But e-motions are just that: external motions. There is a fleeting, undulating quality about them, offering continuous change. Then there is something deeper. What remains constant and unchanging. Eternalness within.

Joy may seem like happiness.

But where “happiness is a solid…joy is a liquid.” – JD Salinger

Joy endures.

At the heart of every emotion is a spiritual quality we all possess. An infinite and ultimately un-nameable attribute. Attempts to name it bring forth simple words, weighty with calm: Joy. Peace. Contentment.

Joy is our birthright.

Stand up tall, my friends.
Insist on Joy.
Look all the madness straight in the eye.
And say your name.