Welcome to my blog..

"We struggle with dream figures and our blows fall on living faces." Maurice Merleau-Ponty

When I started this blog in 2011, I was in a time of transition in my life between many identities - that of Artistic Director of a company (Apocryphal Theatre) to independent writer/director/artist/teacher and also between family identity, as I discover a new family that my grandfather's name change at the request of his boss in WWII hid from view - a huge Hungarian-Slovak contingent I met in 2011. Please note in light of this the irony of the name of my recently-disbanded theatre company. This particular transition probably began in the one month period (Dec. 9, 2009-Jan. 7, 2010) in which I received a PhD, my 20 year old cat died on my father's birthday and then my father, who I barely knew, died too. I was with him when he died and nothing has been the same since. This blog is tracing the more conscious elements of this journey and attempt to fill in the blanks. I'm also writing a book about my grandmothers that features too. I'd be delighted if you joined me. (Please note if you are joining mid-route, that I assume knowledge of earlier posts in later posts, so it may be better to start at the beginning for the all singing, all dancing fun-fair ride.) In October 2011, I moved back NYC after living in London for 8 years and separated from my now ex-husband, which means unless you want your life upended entirely don't start a blog called Somewhere in Transition. In November 2011, I adopted a rescue cat named Ugo. He is lovely. As of January 2012, I began teaching an acting class at Hunter College, which is where one of my grandmothers received a scholarship to study acting, but her parents would not let her go. All things come round…I began to think it may be time to stop thinking of my life in transition when in June 2012 my stepfather Tom suddenly died. Now back in the U.S. for a bit, I notice, too, my writing is more overtly political, no longer concerned about being an expat opining about a country not my own. I moved to my own apartment in August 2012 and am a very happy resident of Inwood on the top tip of Manhattan where the skunks and the egrets roam in the last old growth forest on the island.

I am now transitioning into being married again with a new surname (Barclay-Morton). John is transitioning from Canada to NYC and as of June 2014 has a green card. So transition continues, but now from sad to happy, from loss to love...from a sense of alienation to a sense of being at home in the world.

As of September 2013 I started teaching writing (composition and rhetoric) as an adjunct professor at Fordham University, which I have discovered I love with an almost irrational passion. While felt blessed for the opportunity, after four years of this, the lack of pay combined with heavy work load stopped working, so have transferred this teaching passion to private workshops in my own apartment and working with writers one on one, which I adore. I will die a happy person if I never have to grade an assignment ever again.

I worked full time on the book thanks to a successful crowd-funding campaign in May 2014 and completed it at two residencies at Vermont Studio Center and Wisdom House in summer 2015. I have done some revisions and am shopping it around to agents and publishers now, along with a new book recently completed.

I am now working full-time as a freelance writer, writing workshop leader, coach, and editor. Contact me if you are interested in any of these services.

Not sure when transition ends, if it ever does. As the saying goes, the only difference between a sad ending and a happy ending is where you stop rolling the film.

For professional information, publications, etc., go to my linked in profile and website for Barclay Morton Editorial & Design. My Twitter account is @wilhelminapitfa. You can find me on Facebook under my full name Julia Lee Barclay-Morton. More about my grandmothers' book: The Amazing True Imaginary Autobiography of Dick & Jani

Recently, I started a website Our Grandmothers, Our Selves, which has stories about many people's grandmothers. Please check it out. I will be blogging there, too, now. You can also contact me through that site.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Thanks before Thanksgiving

Things to be grateful for:

3 invitations to spend Thanksgiving with friends, even though I already made plans to spend the time with my parents, the fact that I have such amazing friends is moving to me.  I forgot this about Thanksgiving - it's what people do here - round up the strays (such as myself) and bring 'em in for dinner.  That's lovely.

So Nanette, Alyssa and Eva - thanks so much for making me feel like I'm home.

Ugo - rescue kitty - now lets me give him tummy rubs and purrs.  He is feeling more and more safe every day, explores little bits more of the house and seems to be basically out of his litter box - except for today when friends came over and he had to retreat.

Having had a massage a couple days ago, the woman was rubbing my shoulder and I wanted to cry and did a little bit but realized that I am not repressing sadness or tears, what I was doing was holding on to my sadness and not allowing happiness.

Just now, rubbing Ugo, I told him: now can be your happy time (I had noticed a little bit of his ear looked as if it had been clipped at some point - perhaps by someone or something and that made me sad and angry).  And as I was telling him that, I started telling myself that.  Maybe this can be your happy time now, too.  Maybe this can be the happy part.

Grateful for my friends who came up to visit today, Christian who brought me tea, Fred and Pamela who brought their amazing baby Evelyn and we all went walking in the gorgeous Inwood forest, which prompted the gasps of admiration and wonder I have grown accustomed to as I bring New Yorkers here one after the other who've never seen this forest and these leaves before.

Autumn is ending, I can see the leaves beginning to thin on the trees, but it's still spectacular in a different way.

We came back here and I made pancakes with Christian's help (gluten free pancakes, doncha know), which felt warm, friendly and nice to do.  Evelyn gurgled and waved.  We ate pancakes.

Another friend Eileen came up after her Ultimate Frisbee games and we meditated together, which is our interesting friendship ritual - quite calming for us both.  Then we ate food from the farmer's market, apple cider, cheese and bread.

What a lovely day...

I did do some work as well, getting some plays formatted for publication...and now I need to get stuff together for teaching tomorrow so will sign off...But want to leave you with one more thing to be grateful for...this quote I ran across from Thoreau:

"Let us spend one day as deliberately as Nature, and not be thrown off the track by every nutshell and mosquito’s wing that falls on the rails."

Oh what a goal, what a goal....g'night.

1 comment:

  1. I hope you know how awesome you are! I marvel. Applaud. Cheer.