If I Had My Druthers

I would live with a fully supporting partner who is also my sexual partner. I would be more financially self-sufficient and more creatively productive. I would be performing music several times a month and travel for music and poetry readings several times a year.
I am grateful to have a lot of the elements above, if not all, and to be well on my way to achieving or attracting them! (And I wish the same for you! May you have what you desire, and in the meantime recognize that you already have some or much of it! ☺❤)

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Maybe it’s okay…

…to just feel a little overwhelmed sometimes.

To sit in the feeling of never going to get everything done.
Or never going to get that important thing done.
Or never going to catch your breath again.
Just sitting in the feeling of what we can’t control
can be a beautiful thing.
It’s so much better than struggling against time
and trying to fix everything
Right now I can’t even handle
a things to do list.
Right now I am just enjoying the feeling
of being alive
including everything
including the fact that I may never
get everything done
In fact, I won’t get everything done
And that’s okay.
Life is good.
It’s imperfect, it’s full, it’s busy, it’s painful,
it’s pleasurable, it’s amazingly wonderful.
Life is enough.
Exactly as it is right now.
Overwhelming and lacking, and all.

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Diary of a renaissance negresse 3/4/19

Diary of a renaissance negresse March 4, 2019

Taken on 3/2/19 by my professional photog brother (Giscard “Giz” Xavier)! I had traveled to do a recording session with him (he is also a musician, songwriter, producer, and recording engineer behind several of my album/downloads at http://tinyurl.com/CXCDBaby). But that was not to be (details and music project update later!). What we did get is a series of headshots, which I needed because I received a confirmation email of my being accepted as a workshop presenter at the 6th Annual Rocky Mountain Poly Living Conference in Denver, Colorado, Friday April 12th to Sunday April 14th! (I will be presenting my new workshop “Coming Out: A Spiritual Practice and Social Action.”)
I wanted something current, to show the real me, today, with all that God and Mother Nature gimme, including my lady beard/goatee, and jewelry I made for my ears, hair, and neckal reggiones! More updates at http://gofundme.com/CXYear50
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Following Bliss & Making Art – At Any Age & By Any Means Necessary

Dear Friends & Total Complete Strangers!

I have written two entries, one on February 13th, and the other on the 15th. Hope you enjoy and thank you for reading!

February 13, 2019

(Please forgive occasionally wonky formatting. I was thumb-typing on my Android tablet, in a Word Processing app.)

On Thursday, February 7, I turned 50. I celebrated my birthday by participating in
a 3 hour Vision Board Workshop on the same day.
My new vision board is called “My Year Five-O” (I wanted to call it “My 50th Year” but I didn’t have the right collection of letters and numbers!) and is different than my previous vision board in that that vision board I created years agowas for things I want to manifest in the much more distant future.
This vision board is strictly for Feb 2019-Feb 2020 only.
It is really fun to look at because all of my goals there are measurable, timed, achievable, and several I am already midway into accomplishing.
What looms largest, brightest and most joyous is my long-held dream of travel.
My birthday gift to myself was attending the 14th Annual Poly Living Conference in Philadelphia on Friday February 8th thru Sunday February 10th. I also signed up to do work exchange, in part to save a ton on the registration, and also to make myself be social. It was
therapeutic and joyous!
While there, I read about the Rocky Mountain Poly Living in April 2019 (Denver, CO), and while I have known about it for years, this time I am compelled and called to attend, for three reasons:

1) Polyfolk are part of my community – my tribe, if you will. – Conferences are my jam, and therefore I
love the Poly Living Conference! I also believe in the Loving More organization, and want to support with my attendance and participation in various ways, including presenting workshops, as I have several times at the Poly Living Philadelphia Conference.

2) I have a new sweetie, who lives near Denver. This would be mixing business and pleasure!

3) I am planning a Black Women’s Arts Festival in Denver (BWAF Denver 2020), and this would be a great opportunity to visit potential venues and meet with potential organizers.

All of this I saw happening, before the vision board.

Two days ago I pooled all of my cash, from my EBT Cash account, from my checking and savings accounts, and went to book 1 week in a hotel in Denver. At first I thought it was going to cost $474, because I was going to stay the 1st two days at a much cheaper place ($42/night).
But when I went to book those two rooms, it didn’t work – technical difficulty.
I know about that, it usually means I’m supposed to do something else… Something kept telling me to stop trying to save a buck and stay the entire time at the hotel that the Poly Living Conference is in.
So, even though that hotel’s rate is $71/night (and including taxes and fees, that really adds a lot), I went with that option. The total
was now $568. I paid it.
I felt relieved and like it was a real miracle (I haven’t collected
and/or spent that kind of money in years!)

But after I paid it, with all my accounts at super nearly nothing, I
mean we’re talking single digits here! I was suddenly worried because
this coming Saturday I am going to a restaurant with my immediate
family (of origin) to celebrate my birthday. I would need money for
that (we are going dutch – this was my event, my request, scheduled
months ago…). Tomorrow I have a Valentine’s movie date with another
sweetie, and even though they’re paying for the date itself, I am
traveling out of state to see them, so I need funds for that. Also I
needed $15 to pay for Unlimited Minutes on my Assurance Wireless
(free, governement) cell phone, today. I had a little cash in my
wallet, and hoped for the best. Tried not to worry.
I know that on the 14th (tomorrow, I get $105.50 in my EBT Cash – my
first time receiving cash benefits, since I am childless… This is
thanks to my psychiatrist writing in a form that I have a disability
for 12 months. So until September 2019 I get about $200/month in cash,
in addition to my food stamps. SO grateful!!!). I had been planning to
use my next 2 EBT Cash deposits for my Denver flight, which I had
priced at $198 round-trip. I figured I would have the flight booked by
the end of February. When I realized I may be using those funds for
something else, I relaxed, and remembered that with Priceline, you can
wait a while, and actually get a better deal. Denver isn’t until
April, I can wait until March if need be.
Then, from those thoughts of “relax” and thoughts of abundance, I
remembered I had a check I hadn’t cashed yet! $144 travel
reimbursement check (from the Medical Assistance Transportation
Program/MATP, Delaware County’s version of Philadelphia’s
“Logisticare”)!
So, today, I went to my weekly health class, then right to my credit
union, to deposit this check, plus $40 from my wallet. I just paid the
$15 for my Unlimited Minutes, and I did this cell phone transaction at
one of the computer kiosks at the credit union!
Guess what else I’m doing there? Writing this!

Why? Because I am following my bliss again, as I did in my 20s.
I am doing what I can, when I can. I am finding an easier way out, up,
and through all the muck of life, to live joyously and create and be
happy and play and be the kind of artist I have always dreamed of.

At some point I will have a laptop with wireless where I live.
At some point I will not have to go to libraries to work online.
At some point I will not 90% of the time be thumb typing on my tablet.

But in the meantime, I use what I have and I work on the blocks that
keep me struggling in the most minute ways. I am ready to change. And
change looks exactly like this.

Thank you for reading, and for you continued support of my art/work,
and therefore, life!

Cassendre

M/patrons: http://paypal.me/CXInspiration
http://gofundme.com/CXYear50

February 15, 2019 – Update/Exciting News!

(Writing to you from a Delaware County community library desktop!)

Dear Friends & Total Complete Strangers!

I hope yesterday you enjoyed Valentine’s Day however you rock it. In the olden days I used to go out to dinner with my single girlfriends if I had a sweetie or more in my life. These days I’m not social enough for that, but I did go out and do something. I met a sweetie and we went to see Rebel Wilson’s “Isn’t It Romantic?” which we both enjoyed. And then we went to a restaurant of my choice (my first and last time at Olive Garden!). But enough about that!

While at the last day of the 14th Annual Poly Living Philadelphia Conference this past Sunday the 10th, I submitted 3 workshop proposals to the 6th Annual Rocky Mountain Poly Living in Denver, CO this coming April. Yesterday I spoke with the director and was told that I will indeed be a presenter in Denver, whoo-hoo! How exciting! Not only will I get to present a number of my workshops, but my conference registration fee is now waived, which means the only thing I need to do now is book my flight!

Between the $120 in GoFundMe donations (minus fees) and the $100 in County Cash Assistance I just withdrew from my EBT Cash card and deposited into my credit union checking account, and some other cash I suppose was in there, I learned this afternoon that my balance is about $400, which is double the amount I needed to pay for my Denver flight! So, really it’s just a matter of booking that, which I plan to do this weekend.

Info about Rocky Mountain Poly Living Conference: https://www.lovingmorenonprofit.org/conferences/polyliving/rmpl-denver/

Early Registration Deadline Extended to February 21st! (Only $105, and buy one, get one half off!)

Call for Presenters/Workshops – Submission Deadline February 18, 2019

Thank you all so very much, and I will continue to update you on this and my other 2 “My 50th Year” projects (Covers CD, Denver Trip, My First Real Book)!

Thank you for reading, and for you continued support of my art/work,
and therefore, life!

Cassendre

M/patrons: http://paypal.me/CXInspiration
http://gofundme.com/CXYear50

Make yourself a beautiful day!

Cassendre Xavier

“renaissance negresse”

$15,000 Leeway Transformation Award-Winning musician, writer, actress, visual artist, and community cultural arts organizer.

Founder & Executive Director of the Black Women’s Arts Festival (Est. 2003) and the Women’s Writing & Spoken Word Series (Est. 2002).

Official website: http://cassEndrExavier.wordpress.com

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GoFundMe Update: One Step Closer to Denver!

Update February 13, 2019: I am one step closer to my Denver visit goal (to plan BWAF Denver 2020)! Yesterday I paid for a 7 day hotel stay there this coming April. Now all I need is to book the flight reservations and either pay a conference registration fee or have one of my workshop proposals accepted, which would waive that (conference registration) fee. Onward and upwards! http://gofundme.com/CXYear50 http://Paypal.me/CXInspiration

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Fundraiser for My 50th Year! (Feb 2019-Feb 2020)

Greetings, Friends, Supporters, and Total Complete Strangers!

Super quick version! I am trying to raise $3,000 to do 3 very special creative projects this year#
1) Release my first cover album
2) Travel to Colorado to plan the first Black Women’s Arts Festival there (I am the founder, executive director, and we have produced 13 BWAFs in Philadelphia!).
3) Publish my first “real” book.

Details:
Hello!
I have used GoFundMe 7 times over the years to fund various projects, emergencies, and initiatives. The most recent time was in 2017.

I am returning with an exciting new campaign: My 50th Year!

February 7, 2019 I will be fifty years earned and youthful!

Quick FAQs:

How I’m celebrating my birthday:
I am scheduled to attend and do work exchange shifts at this year’s Poly Living Conference at the Embassy Suites hotel in Philadelphia, Friday through Sunday, February 8-10.

Why I created this campaign:
Even if I didn’t have longtime bipolar 2 and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), plus other challenges, 50 is a milestone year for anyone. For people struggling with these issues, which have built into them a constant, whispering invitation to escort ourselves right off of this planet, 50 is even more significant. There have been many times, going all the back to my childhood, that I seriously contemplated suicide, for relief of symptoms and life circumstances almost too much to bear. Thankfully I have never become so despondent that my thoughts turned to planning. Thankfully I have love in my life, from family of choice and origin, dear friends, and the artistic and creative life that make it ALL (pains and challenges included) worth living.
In the same way that Hollywood marriage years aren’t the same for everyone, one bipolar birthday is more like 3 for anyone else. There’s a reason life insurance is higher for those of us with bipolar disorder: suicide occurs at a much higher rate for us.
So, if you have a bipolar loved one, hug them extra, because in addition to that, bipolar is just hard on the body, period. But enough about that!
I created this campaign to celebrate not only the day of my 50th year, but the entire year, during which I expect to continually be creative and productive.

Projects you would be helping to fund:

1) My first covers album (my and my co-producer’s interpretations/arrangements of songs by various artists)
$500-$800 – Album Producer & Engineer Giscard Xavier (who also uploads the songs for digital download sale)
$500-$700 – CD Duplication & Design – black woman artist (BWAF) owned and operated Jill of All Trades
More about my downloads and physical CDs here: https://store.cdbaby.com/all/cassendre

2) My planning an additional Black Women’s Arts Festival, this time in Denver, Colorado, next year (BWAF Denver 2020)
$800-$1,000 – 5-day visit to Denver, Colorado (Including travel and hotel) for networking and organizer planning meetings. Our BWAF Denver contacts and supporters include BWAF advisory board member Stacey Merkl-Watts. Stacey is from Denver, and she and her husband, musician Rupert Wates, live in New York and Denver. Visit their websites at RealizeYourBeauty.org and RupertWatesMusic.com.
(I have seem working for months with producer Amor La Luna and BWAF board members on Philadelphia’s 13th annual Black Women’s Arts Festival, Sat-Sun, Sept 21-22, 2019 at TheRotunda.org. But I am not including this work in my “50th Year” birthday request, only for the below projects. We are working on funding for BWAF through other avenues!)

3) Writing and self-publishing my first full-length, perfectbound book, *The Trauma & Mindfulness Journal (and Group Meeting Guide)*, *Making of a Woman/Artist, Revised/Commemorative Edition*
or another title from the partial manuscripts I have been working on.
$400 Consultant fees to BWA Krista Nelson

Total: $3,000

Thank you so much to those who help, and please know that I did *not* pad the amounts to counteract the fees. What we are asking for is on the low end of typical fees for these kinda of services.
And as usual artists seem to get it done whether we reach our financial goals or not!

Hopefully we will be able to sufficient funds for the enjoyable completion of these creative projects.

Stay well and creative!

Cassendre

Donations:
http://Paypal.me/CXInspiration (Preferred)
https://www.gofundme.com/CXYear50

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Official Holidays of the Black Women’s Arts Festival 2019

Did you know the Black Women’s Arts Festival, which I started in 2003, has official holidays?

February: International Month of Black Women in the Arts

February 7: International Day of Black Women in the Arts (The 7th is also my birthday!)

International Week of Black Women in the Arts is February 7-14 (actually 8 days, ’cause we’re large like that, and why not? ☺)

Anyone can celebrate black women in the arts:

1) Be a m/patron, fan, supporter, appreciator, donor, volunteer, assistant, mentor, helpmate, friend to a black female art-related project or individual.

2) Be more productive as a black female-identified artist or creative type. Set new, reachable, measurable arts related goals with deadlines, and have a support system to help you be accountable.

3) Increase visibility of black female created art by having it around you and sharing it with others.

Enjoy!

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