The story of the Bliss experience that eventually led to me being a spontaneous poet
In 2015, Gaby saw one of my cartoon greeting cards in a shop at the Distillery District in Toronto. She showed it to Sarah, and they decided to reach out to see if I would be interested in including my cookie cartoon in the Bliss Bags, along with Gaby's cookies. While we were making arrangements to have the cartoon printed on postcards, I somehow agreed to go to the retreat. It is very unlike me to go somewhere with people I don't know, but I was a wife, and mother with young children, and I hadn't gone anywhere on my own in years.
The retreat began on Friday night with a circle of strangers. By the time we were done, we were friends who had shared and laughed deeply. Saturday, I went to workshops all day, booked an EFT Tapping session with Vaishali Patel for after dinner, had meaningful conversations with lovely women, and ate like a queen!
Everything was uplifting and inspiring, except for one thing: the Saturday night coffee house event loomed ahead. Women were signing up to sing, tell stories, and show off their talents. I had brought a short comedy routine with me, and every time I looked at it, I hated it. I tried to fix it at the retreat, but every change made it worse. I was disappointed and frustrated because I was drawn to that stage like a birthday girl is drawn to her triple chocolate cake.
We sat down for dinner, and instead of enjoying Gaby's delicious foods, I was staring at the stage, angry at myself for not being able to put together a few lousy minutes of comedy. I mean, I'm a cartoonist for crying out loud!
Dinner over, defeated, and beating myself up, I went to find Vaishali for my booked EFT Tapping session. I ugly cried like a baby, and she patiently, taught me how to tap. To say that this session was miraculous underplays the experience. It completely changed my life.
Session over, enlivened, and eager to get up on the stage, I returned to the dining room, borrowed paper and pen, and effortlessly wrote a comedy routine in 5 minutes. I waited my turn, walked on stage, read straight off the sheet I had just written, and made the Bliss woman laugh so hard, they cried!
This was one of the most powerful experiences of my life, and lay the ground work for the improvisational typewriter poetry that I now do.
P.S. Here is a video link to the performance, and the sheet of paper from that night. It's hard to hear what I'm saying on the video, but the laughter is loud and clear!