Tuesday, February 9, 2010

reconciling the past..

my godmother was a woman whom my mother was partnered with at the time of my birth. had they not split up when i was two i probably would be calling her my mother right now, but alas they did..and so she stayed in my life through an occasional visit to her wonderful little world of a home...she taught me about the unseen. the potential of the human mind..inspired me about making a difference in the world...told me i could do anything...she was my soul mama all around and gave me so much. she suffered from multiple sclerosis and so was bedridden and my whole life was in and out of hospitals..therefore when i got a call 2 months before my 21st birthday that she needed to go back to the hospital this didnt phase me as much as it should have, or would have to someone else with a different experience. i was young...i was experiencing a life that i had always dreamed....living in an amazing house in berkeley with amazing friends...we performed together in a circus and i was living the dream...being 20 i was also extremely distracted and oblivious to a few things..especially famiy related. anyways, needless to say i got off the phone with my godmother and went on about my life. two months later, days before my 21st birthday, i got another call. my godmothers roommate. "where have you been???Diane is so sick...she needs you.." i was suddenly brought back to earth...she had said she would be out in a few weeks...but time have slipped by...i rushed down there...walked into her hospital room and beheld a site that i will never forget. she was so far gone..so close to the end...i could barely recognize her. she looked up at me and said "Where have you been?" her eyes were so hurt..so betrayed..i was filled with the most shame and guilt i have ever experienced. IT WAS MY FAULT. she said so. i left crying like never before and while i was able to go back and make peace with her before she died, her words haunted me for years...after she passed i took up and left the city..i hitchhiked to rainbow gatherings, i joined the hare krishnas...and went to burning man...it was the summer of 2001. trying to hide from this deep shame and pain of killing my godmother i hid behind a facade of fantasy and drugs...we were bad ass...the style was impeccable..the dream complete..the music was sexy..the intention was pure...i knew that what we had should be shared with the world and i knew that my voice, and my songs could take us there...on the morning of the last day i dropped an innocent hit of acid..the party was just getting started afterall..i went on about my morning until about an hour later i suddenly broke down...i was screaming and crying and even the love of the goddess temple couldnt appease me...my most amazing of friends tried to calm me down...tried to give me peace..but i was in agony..i was experiencing the death of my godmother and all the torment i had been suppressing...i started fading in and out of consciousness..and suddenly i could feel two paths emerging..one path was the path of love...i would live a happy life where i cared for the people around me and was loved in return...or i could lead a path of success..where i would achieve all of my wildest dreams of being a superstar and sharing my music with the world..but the sacrifice would be love. what it would take to get there would mean leaving all of my love behind..i would end up alone and miserable..loved by the world but loving no one. these were the two paths ahead of me. i could go between them with my consciousness...but i had to choose..the trip finally ended but that feeling of pain, that i could never have everything i wanted...that i would have to choose between an open heart or a dream fullfilled has stuck with me since then. ive processed it many times and even made amends with her on a beach in Bali the first time i went out there...i spoke with her through the fullest of moons and she forgave me..and i forgave myself..it was resolved on one level that night..but now, years later from even then, sitting in the arclight movie theater...it was resolved on an even deeper level. i have been confronted with the purest of loves recently..and in facing this path of finding love i have been afraid..afraid that by giving into it i would loose something else..this fear of love has effected my relationships with all of my friends..i hold back. i dont give them the love i know i have because im so afraid of losing myself to it.. i want so much to share my music with the world and achieve the level of success and artistic quality that i see in my mind..and i have been holding onto this idea that i dont deserve it..that on some level i am broken and evil and can never achieve everything i desire..but last night...i got it. i saw the scared little boy who was just distracted and missed the last days of his godmothers life...the little boy who loved so much that the pain in his godmothers eyes was too much to bear..who took on the guilt and the shame and resolved never to love again because he let her die...In the arms of a new love, i was able to see this and let it go on such a deep level. i feel more free today than ever before. i feel liberated and empowered and i am so ready to love the world and share my music with the world without fear and the biggest gift is that having taken this on i can bring her into my life again..she can once again be my guide and my muse and my mentor..and i can let her in... ive always wondered why i keep killing all my plants..and now i know that i have been unwilling to love them for fear of destroying them and myself. today i buy a fern. which is my favorite plant that always dies. i am ready to love it and the world and my family and my lover.... love...i am yours.


Anonymous said...

now i really see the world differently, thankyou cassidy

Petunia said...

Just beautiful, Cassidy. I think you've got it just right now. Love is the most important thing there is, and when you find it, nurture it, and don't ever let it go. Nothing else is worth it. The real thing is also very hard to find, so never ignore it. Take it from one who lost it...my own fault.

But, I know you know. You're a great guy, Cassidy.

Anonymous said...

This was lovely Cass. I'm sure your godmother is smiling with approval, and love.

You will find your perfect balance. The important thing is to enjoy the quest.

So much more I would like to say, but I'm a bit teary.

May <3 surround you always.

BridgetEden said...

Cassidy thank you for sharing with us these deeply personal things. This is one of the most beautiful/moving things I've ever read. it reminds me why I adore you - you have such a beautiful soul! You never have to choose between love & success - I think when you choose love & open your heart - you find out you can have both & deserve both. I am glad you were able to release this guilt. We have 4 layers to our souls so a deep soul-healing can take more than one try. It's interesting that all of these things were already in your songs - the scared little boy in Little Boys & Dinasaurs, the fairy godmothers in your graphic novel.
Everyone feels broken inside in some way - sharing this will help others who read it to remember that its never too late to heal. I know that your godmother is a spirit guide for you & she has been waiting for you to forgive yourself. She is smiling now. Enjoy your ferns!

Josh said...

You are such an incredible person, Cassidy. Time and time again I am always knocked sideways by your honesty and candidness, how much of yourself you share with the world when everyone else hides so much.

I can't even really explain all the ways this hit me personally, maybe some day I will be able to. I hope you never stop putting yourself out there, your experiences and your journeys because so many people can relate and so many people are inspired by who you are.

Wildevine (Janet) said...

Cassidy, this was really wonderful to read. I detected this level of awareness and love in you when I first heard you sing. It always feels like we are walking this path alone, but then, a day comes when we realize that we are all connected through the strands. Sending you much energy and love,

capf55 said...

Godmother had you confused. You didn't know how sick she was or you would have been there.Mom did the same thing.Some people still feel bad they didn't see her at the end.Too bad Godmother made you feel bad.Don't feel guilty.You were always good to her and loved her.You did your best.

@rvnhawk said...

Cassidy -

I am glad that you have finally had this epiphany and that you see what so many can see beyond inoside of you.

Believe it or not, your beautiful soul shines through even in your music and your eyes in your videos and ustreams.

Keep sharing with the world and you will continue to grow. You have been an inspiration to many of us to let go and come to terms with the past and grow as well.


Anonymous said...

I have tears in my eyes. Life hands you these realizations at the exact moment that you realize how much your heart has been weighed down. I'm so happy that you know now that love is not a zero-sum game. The more you can love yourself the more love you have to give, and the more love you give the more you have.

You deserve so much love, and now you can let yourself feel it.

Anonymous said...

Thank you.

Nina said...

I'm sitting here in awe and tears at your depth of emotion and passion for life...and your extraordinary honesty about it all. I'll consider myself a resounding success at motherdom if my daughter lives her life with one tenth of the joy and intensity of feeling you possess.


Maggie said...

Thank you for sharing your journey with us. Good luck and great love to you. I know we will be hearing shades of this epiphany in your wonderful music. Your level of honesty and openness is one of the many reasons your music speaks to me. Thank you for your inspiration and humanity.

Claire said...

So that's what it was then. I don't know you, but in your pics and videos I've always sensed a sadness like a shadow behind you. I never understood it. You seemed to be happy, but it was always the same impression, every time, that somehow something deep got broken along the way. And now you've allowed yourself to heal. Feels pretty amazing doesn't it?

I truly believe that we are all the walking wounded, some are just better healed than others. Many years ago a very dear friend of mine sat with me through a night like the one you described. He held me as I said the words that couldn't be said, so afraid that I hid behind a pillow the whole time even though he pleaded with me to look at him. The next morning he left me a letter and as I read your story I was so sure that his words for me are for you too. This is what the letter said (with your name in place of mine)

Dear Cassidy,

You are beautiful.
You are intelligent.
You are loved.
You are not alone.

It's been almost a decade since that night, but I still have that letter tucked into my journal.

Words from strangers don't mean much, but if the timing is right, sometimes they do. Hold on to what you've learned. Water the fern. And let yourself bask in the sunlight.

Anonymous said...

Wow. That was inspiring. I have a similar issue that actually made me break down today in front of people, just randomly. I really needed this today. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Anonymous said...


This is exactly why you connect on such a deep level with everyone. You ARE love, my dear.

Kweenjeane said...

Dear, Precious man. We have seen this in you, even though you could not. Your courage in sharing will heal many. You are your Godmomma's Spirt Child and now you are lovingly healed in that relationship. Her response to you at that dreadful time was a call of fear, not a withdrawl of love. You responded with fear and now you are flowing with her spirit in love. Read Gerald Jampolsky, the "Guru" in Attitudinal Healing : "Love is Letting Go of Fear;" "Teach Only Love;" "Goodbye to Guilt;" "Change Your Mind, Change Your Life."
I am joyous that you are letting love in. Even more doors are opening as you discover your authentic self....NAMASTE.

Anonymous said...

Love is so healing, real love. In your vulnerability, you have become empowered, Cassidy.

I am glad you have released the bond of guilt, and embraced the love you were given. I know your Godmother never wanted or intended for you to be enchained with this burden. You did the best you could at the developmental level and the place you were. You can love and you are lovable!!! Thank you!!! Thanks for your beautiful vulnerability!

standtogether said...

You're not only ridiculously brave for saying this, you clearly have an amazing capacity to love, be loved, and understand yourself. I aspire to be more like you. Congratulations. Sending love and support your way. xoxo

Lauri said...

Dear Cass..
Earlier this evening, my angel/vet Anne came to my home and we helped my wonderful cat Misha to cross over and pass from this black&white furry body..

My friend Beth came over to support me & take me to dinner afterwards, to ease my sadness..

I'm sharing all this b/c at the end of your writing, you mention about getting the fern and knowing that you will allow it to thrive..

Well, Beth brought me a lovely white orchid plant tonight, and after saying thank you, the first thing I said was, "I should give this back to you b/c I always kill orchids..."

But then I remembered your tweets about getting the fern, and I realized that in honor of my beautiful kitty, who had grown up with me for 17 years, that I could actually change that story I had been telling myself & everyone...

I realized that transformation is indeed possible, and that in this & every moment I CAN create life, with Misha's spirit inspiring me..

I'm honored to be your friend & to support your integrity & taking a stand for love in your work..

Abrazos, LRT

Daniela said...

Although one might disagree, a loved ones death isn't anyone's fault. Blaming yourself and holding all of that guilt within yourself is too much to bear for one person. You are only one person. There's only so much you can do. Opening up this way to your fans, to anyone who is reading is something I admire and appreciate. Thank you for that. But never blame yourself because in the end it is those you love the most who suffer....

Joan said...


Thank you for sharing this flowering. I am happy for you and your new love, and especially Fern. Love and joy are not always deserved, because love doesn't work that way. It just IS.

I have felt my father's hands on my shoulders, and his voice in my ear once when I did something he was proud of. At the time he had been "dead" for many years. (He died when I was 11.) Guilt and grief get in the way of love, as you have found. Trust yourself take from the world what you need and give whole-heartedly what you can. I have taken the line "Tell a stranger she's beautiful" to heart, and in that way you have touched and brightened my life.

Last thing- my best friend- a huge bright soul- passed away 2 years ago. I was only told the day before they removed the ventilator. I got there in time to hold her hand and sing to her and wear the tie-dye she loved. She woke once, a few hours before she passed, and I was able to tell her I loved her, that her family was all right and loved her, and she could go. The being there at the end was what I could do, and it's the only thing that helped me remember her joyfully. Your godmother loved you (how could she not?). Don't disrespect that by allowing guilt to sully your life.
Take her love, and pass it on.

Thank you, dear, for all you give. Know that you have touched one soul deeply, and with love.

Anonymous said...

I really like when people are expressing their opinion and thought. So I like the way you are writing