There is something so powerful in being Known. There’s validation of Self, affirmation of my experience of Reality when others experience and know it too.

We just watched a crazy movie about teenage kids at a drama camp. Although I never actually went to camp, I had the same obsession with theater and general life drama as the kids in the movie. Such a huge part of my life, right up until three days before I came to Twin Oaks, my last day as a professional actress working with a travelling theater company.

And now I live in this place where people know I used to be an actress, where I’ve performed my old audition monologue for open mic nights, and directed kids plays and musical farces of communal life. But they don’t know me as an Actress, as someone using my craft to explore and express the deeper parts of myself.

Watching the movie tonight, I longed for the friends who know me in this way, the friends with whom I’ve shared the stage and the cast party dance floors. They’ve seen me express the possibilities of who I am — who I could be — and in seeing those, they Know me more fully.

after the movie I walked in a daze down to the courtyard (where I live), and as I passed the path down to the pond, on a whim I decided to jump in. Swimming in the middle of the night is magic, and tonight as I waded into the water, I regrounded myself in the reality of what my life is right now. “I’m standing naked in a pond on a commune in Virginia.”

I ducked my head under the water and folded my body into a forward somersault under the water. The water on my skin as I spun upsidedown brought me to an even deeper understanding. It’s not even a matter of being on a commune instead of on the stage. I’m Here, right now. The water and the trees and the peeper frogs are merely my witness — I’m not an actress, I’m not a communard… I simply Am. I am.

I came out of the somersault and as my head rose above the water, my Zen understanding faded. The memory of the moment remained, but I was again acutely aware of my life and my history.

Regarding comments: philosophical reflection only, please — no advice. I want to work this one out for myself.