The Escape Artist Challenge

We don’t have perfect responses as humans, but we try. In any pursuit, anything is possible and it must start with self-love.

It’s taken me a long time because I was swayed by my surroundings rather than my intuition. It’s taken me a long time because I grew up in patriarchal systems honoring men before women. Honoring the family unit and traditions before myself. Honoring capitalism before my art and soul.

As much as I could be resentful, choosing me also means choosing grace and gratitude. Those external influences ultimately taught me how to treat myself better.

I am grateful for my experiences as well as the love and consideration people had to think of me. Imagine pursuing something wholeheartedly with no barriers or conflicts, with no challenge to your identity and passion.

Poetry may not have found me in the same way, I would not have had the life experience to create my poems or songs. I may never have found the beautiful friends that surround me today. I may have never learned how to be grateful for all that I am or looked hard in the mirror to recognize how to truly heal.

Without that push and pull, the conflict of being me, I may have stayed comfortable with friends who did not honor my whole being or I may have accepted a personality that did not honor myself. Without the questions of identity and belonging, I may not have been pushed so steadfast in my creative pursuits.

Today, I reject notions of submission and inferiority. I claim my power and respect. Nobody can touch me, because I know who I am.

Anger or fear may surface, and that is allowed and necessary. We must move beyond that to reach the depths of our full potential.

I needed the simultaneous silence and chaos resulting from the pandemic, facing relationships that lasted and did not last, my long-term career burnout, and self-inflicting heartbreak and insecurity.

I am grateful for me, the effort I’ve put in, and the consistency I’ve maintained, even with some or a lot of insecurity and self-doubt. I am here and powerful and truly feel the world has listened to and supported my journey this whole time.

The American Heritage Dictionary defines escape as “to break loose from confinement” and I have been confined. Confined to denying myself the art, passion, and commitment I deserved from day one. I am not escaping this world; I am escaping the mentality that confined me to try and conform, that chose distractions over pursuit, that needed validation and admiration. I am escaping from those notions of what I thought I was supposed to do and finally choosing me.

For anyone feeling stuck, stretched thin, or unhappy, I challenge you to explore, reflect, and surround yourself with honest, kind friends. I challenge you to demand and claim your space and persevere until you find it. I hope this “Escape Artist” blog series can motivate or inspire you on your pursuit.

When we can pursue our truth and show up genuinely, we reclaim the power and energy to create a world that honors not just ourselves but all life. It’s a time when we dearly need it.

Thank you so much for reading. God bless & God speed.

Photo by Thach Tran on

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