Studio day 5 at the Dance Box in Barnsley. Sat on the floor in the studio, back against the radiator, scarf on, thick jumper, 2 pairs of socks. Can’t believe how bad I feel. I’m in that world between sleep and no sleep. Imagine being a refugee trying to escape and moving only at night not sleeping properly for days. I left the house today and had to double check I was dressed.
Am I dressed?
Have I brushed my teeth?
What day? Month Is it? Have I got on the right train? Where am I going again?
Feeling disillusioned and disorientated. Between a world of dream and reality. Stuck in the middle. Lack of sleep, lack of rest. Proper rest. This is day 5 in the studio and not one day have I been in 100% good health. How is it that the other days I am. But these I am not. Not resting properly. Not giving days off. Sunday – a day to rest relax and prepare for the following week. Need to rethink this and bed time routine. No working alarm clock. Cannot be reliant on this anymore.
Rain falls down outside the window. Does it fall down in the Jungle? Does the Jungle exist anymore? Where are all the people who have passed through it? Is the rain falling outside their window in their new UK home? Are they settled? Will it be 1 move or 2? 3? 5? 10?
Research is crazy. Need more time. Connecting with people is heart wrenching. Hearing their stories. What did you think was going to happen? This year. This shit but amazing year. 2016. I feel so alive but too much. The current of time pushing me forward keeping me moving. I am starting to go under. Need to allocate specific down time, to rest and re build to ride with ease in and over the wave of time.
Hearing mentors and teachers of the past – “studio time is working time. concentrate your mind”. “Its not what to do its what not to do”. I am intrigued by my mental block. I thought the studio time would be easy (well, easier). I remember last time feeling stuck on day 1 but then finding a hook in. This is day 5 and still a struggle. One nugget has emerged. Body feels too tired to push through with it. I want to curl up in a ball and sleep/ read/ watch/ listen.
Last week I began to flick through a book I was given created by Alice Myers called ‘nothing is impossible under the sun’. The book is the documentation of a two year project spent meeting and talking with people in the ‘Jungle’ camp in Calais. It records individual stories and their accounts about journeying from home countries into and through the ‘Jungle’ camp. From reading only a few paragraphs it’s clear the stories have sunk into my subconscious from my reflections written above. I was surprised I was given the book – a quick exchange of words between the book owner and myself over an empty chair before the occupant came back from the bar a few weeks back. I explained the project, they replied with the offering of the book, I said thanks. All in under 100 words. And here it is ending up with me, apparently (without me even realising) adding deeply to the research process.
Ensuring rest and good health is obvious but its not just that. I feel heavy in the studio. I’m well and truly into the research process now, immersing and teeth digging into its core, to uncover and peel away layers of my research enquiry. And whilst gaining knowledge and learning of different individuals experiences is muy importante to the research, it’s sitting heavy in my head, trickling down one piece of information at a time into my body as I decide… no understand…no REFLECT….what to do with it. That is a privileged and wonderful situation to be in but with a heavy weight and responsibility. (I’m reminding myself of any period drama film I’ve watched and heard this sentence “With privilege comes specific obligations”) speaking like a royal ……… oh dear, must be time to finish this and move.