This is the second drum I have made with Carlos Gomes and both times have been transformational for me. The first drum I made about 4 years ago. I had miscarried the year before and Peter and I had been trying to get pregnant without success. When you work on each step of the drum, it is done with intention and sacredness. I chose to sand mine by hand, and each time I sat with her it was a moving meditation. I don't know how long I had been sanding but at some point the voice of my drum changed in my head and she said, "When I get my belly you will have yours". You see, when the skin of the drum is put on the hoop and is initiated she has her belly. The drum is female and the drum beater is male and together they give birth to sound-and we are not suppose to play the drum until it has been initiated.
Long story short-I put the skin on and was not pregnant, our first initiation ceremony was canceled-not pregnant-second one...cancelled-not pregnant, third date went ahead as planned-not pregnant. 2 weeks later the test came back positive-so I actually was pregnant with Kieran at the time of initiation, but it was too soon to tell. Coincidence? maybe, but not for me. It taught me to trust my intuition more, and listen for the voice in the silence.
So my second drum I always felt I would make with Carlos for Kieran, while letting Kieran help me. When it was time to pick our drum hoop to prepare, the hoop I chose had a knot that looked like a woman's body, and I knew at that moment this drum was for me. I still shared the experience with Kieran, showing him the steps at home, but it isn't his. Maybe the next one, and perhaps then he will be old enough to do his own.
I don't have as big of a story as the first drum, but body image and sensuality have been big issues on my mind the past year and seeing the knot on the drum hoop, reminded me I am on the right path. When it was time to ask our drums for her name, my mind was blank and thought I Would name her Quert (for apple tree). It wasn't until two weeks later, while I was driving that the name Phoenix popped into my mind and wouldn't leave.
My drums has her name, and it is Phoenix. I didn't know much about Phoenix when she claimed that name, other than they can burn and be reborn, but it didn't matter. After she was named I looked up some more on the Phoenix. I learned that it is of the sun. The sun is masculine and the moon is the feminine. At first I thought perhaps a mistake had been made, since this is a moon drum, but when I asked myself why her name must be Phoenix, it was a reminder to have balance between male and female, especially within yourself. The Phoenix also lives in cycles. The Phoenix can choose when to burn and be reborn. In Chinese legend it is a symbol of feminine grace (very fitting for the theme of my drum). The Phoenix reminds me to just let go, and renew myself, to take time for me, and allow change to flow as I grow.
She reminds me to light my fire. How will you light yours?
Visit my Society 6 Shop for prints and accessories
Social Media Feed
Jennifer Russell was born and raised in New Brunswick, Canada.She is an Intentional artist who focuses on creating meaning full connections to her work for herself and others. Nothing is more satisfying to her than hearing that her work has inspired someone in their own life.