Interview with One Million Wild Hearts

Earlier this year I was interviewed by One Million Wild Hearts. They’re a beautiful community that features creative women of color from around the world. See the original article here.

As a womxn, why do you think it is important to create?

It’s an outlet to express to ourselves how we feel. It is healing for us to release what we have wound up inside. There is healing because the creative process allows us an opportunity to understand ourselves on a deeper level. There seems to be this idea that to make it in this world womxn have to be ‘strong’, and strong means being ‘tough’, and tough means not showing any emotion or not allowing ourselves to feel. I’m increasingly realizing, however, that there is a real strength in cultivating emotional intelligence, and I see the creative expression as a way for womxn to do that in a healthy way. In turn, it helps others in their own healing.

What has been your proudest moment as an artist/creative?

Opening for the main concert at the Belize International Yoga Festival in 2017. It was the very first time in all my stage performances that I actually felt really satisfied with my show. I’m glad I took a chance and said yes to that opportunity. I was so fearful of doing an entire set with just me and my guitar. No backup. No loop machine. I had read online that acoustic sets can get boring after the first few songs. A close relative even asked me if I thought I could really do a whole hour by myself.

How do you make time to create?

There’s a feeling that sweeps over me—a feeling that grips me and I have to respond to that call no matter what I’m doing in that moment. In this sense, the time I make to create is arbitrary. It could be while I’m journaling, while I’m driving or while I’m waiting for class to start and a melody with words just flows in.

Who are your influences/inspirations?

My ancestors on whose shoulders I stand to be part of this world, and who continue to guide and protect me; my mother who is probably the original hippie; my grandmother (Sylvia Sampson née Castillo) and her deep spirituality, faith and inner-strength; the people of Barranco Village, Belize who welcome me with love and patience every time I return home; my father who grounds me in self and in the meaning of the word ‘home’, Andy Palacio, Flyleaf, Evanescence, Ingrid Michaelson, India.Arie, Lianne La Havas, Desirée Dawson, Alysha Brilla, Paolo Coelho, Marc Ney of (N)ego Studios.

What message do you want to spread with your art?

I believe that there is strength in embracing your emotions, understanding what they are and where they come from, and giving yourself a healthy space to live in the fullness of those feelings. My goal is to transform it all into something beautiful. My deepest desire is to create a safe space for reflection and inner healing. Healing is the mission.

What does self-love mean to you?

I am Light. Self loves means taking care of my spirit and the body it inhabits. I do this by caring about what I consume, and by this I mean all the things we consume with our senses—food, music, tv shows, conversations.  If any of those things make me feel even the slightest bit ill, I run the other way. There is a divine space inside of me that I MUST take care of and guard at all times. Nothing is worth sacrificing my inner peace, my deepest desires or any other of my deepest needs. For the sake of my mental, physical and emotional health, it is something I take very seriously.


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