exploring vulnerability and transparency one bath at a time

Tag: Music


Megan Larson

Date of Interview: January 7, 2017

Name: Megan

Age: 28

Pronouns: She/Her

Location: Washington, DC

If you were an underwater creature, which one would you be?

So, I actually don’t love the ocean, but I did some research on this question.  I looked up creatures that are solitary in nature, and the first thing to come up was an octopus. Yeah, I guess I would be an octopus. They’re considered one of the most intelligent and behaviorally diverse creatures in the ocean, which I thought was really cool.

What are you passionate about?

The word passionate is kind of tricky to me, because I feel like there has to be a monumental action that follows it. So if I say “I’m passionate about music”, I should be making it. If I say “I’m passionate about literature”, I should be writing it.  If I say “I’m passionate about equality or human rights”, I should be marching for it. But I don’t… and that doesn’t mean I’m not passionate about those things, because I am – my actions are just not as monumental. I’m passionate about music, so I listen to it. I’m passionate about literature, so I read it. I’m passionate about equality and human rights, so I believe in it and I stand with my friends in support. I will say something that has become more important to me that I’ve become passionate about is  self awareness and… I feel like I’ve always been self aware of things that I want out of this life, but I don’t think, until very recently, I’ve been aware about my worth. I’m a catch. I hate saying that because it sounds like such a conceited thing to say, but I really don’t think it is. Recently I’ve been like fuck yeah, I’m a catch and I’m a queen and you’re a queen and we should be going after relationships that back that up. That’s something that I’ve become extremely passionate about, is this self awareness discovery. I feel like I’ve been on it for awhile now I guess.

What was the catalyst for that discovery?

So I’ve been single for a year and a half and before my previous relationship I was single for three years. I’ve spent a lot of my 20’s being single and number one; I think that’s fantastic. But I’m just like every other person, I want to be able to find whomever my person is and live whatever life we’re destined to live. In the summer I met this guy and we had this amazing connection and this chemistry was undeniable. I immediately realized that… this could be it. I thought that relatively soon. It ended up that I was wrong, of course. He would disappear, and then kept coming back, saying things that made it seem like he wanted all of these things with me. And we kept doing this cycle. This last time he disappeared again, which was not too long ago, I realized I felt really good. Like so good about this. Because I’ve given it three chances and it’s obviously not gonna work out. Immediately I was like, “what the fuck am I doing?” I realized that I deserve so much better than this. I deserve someone who actually wants to be with me, and that his actions match his words. So, it’s been pretty recent that I’ve had this total epiphany, but I think it’s been something I’ve been working towards the past few years.

What do you think of platonic relationships?

I think platonic relationships are so important. I’m not going to say I’m “blessed” because I don’t like saying that word in general. But I do feel like I’m so extremely lucky, and I don’t know what I did right in my life to deserve the people that I have in it. One of my closest friends, she also lives here and we went to high school together. We weren’t close in high school, but now we are and… she’s one of the best people that I know! I don’t think I would be able to enjoy my time as much if she wasn’t here. There’s a handful of people in my life that I’m so lucky to have. Those relationships are super important, when you’re single and even when you’re with someone in a romantic way.

Samantha Yvette

Samantha Yvette


Date of Interview: December 14, 2016

Name: Samantha Yvette

Age: 25

Pronouns: She/Her

Location: Washington, DC


How often do you bathe or shower?

Everyday if I’m not being lazy. I start with a shower and almost always end up taking a bath because this is a jacuzzi tub. I like lining the edge with candles and I play music or read until the water turns cold and I’m super pruny.

If you were an underwater creature, which one would you be?

I think I would be a mermaid. I grew up in Florida and I was always swimming or at the beach. Everyone in Florida has a pool, and that’s pretty much the only thing to do because it’s too hot to play or do anything outside for a long time. My grandma used to have to yell at me to come out of the water and I never wanted to, so I learned how to hold my breath for a really long time so I that I could pretend to not hear her ::laughs::. So yes, definitely a mermaid, I already feel like one. I’m most comfortable in water.

What are you passionate about?

Music and movement. I have found it to be really healing, especially now. I was always performing and singing as a child and recently found my latest passion which is fire dancing. It has brought a whole new meaning to my life. Because of it, I’m now a part of a community that feels like home and am able to continue my performance career through this new chapter in my life. I’m also currently in the process of learning how to DJ, so hopefully I can give back the feeling of what music and movement has given me.

How has it been healing?

I… I have been through a lot in my life. My mom was a single mom and my dad wasn’t in the picture. She had my brother and I very young and she most likely had mental health issues she didn’t address before having us. It always seemed like we were a nuisance to her. She refused to get help from anyone even though she needed it. At one point we lived out of the country with my Aunt while she stayed in the states because she couldn’t take care of us. My family would criticize her so she secluded us from them. I guess it was her way to protect us and because of that I never developed strong relationships with most of my family. I kinda…never felt like I was loved by her, so when I met my first boyfriend at 16, he gave me so much attention and took care of me and that felt really good. After a year, the relationship turned abusive. Because of him, I had stopped doing everything that I was passionate about. I stopped dancing, I stopped singing. I had to put him first, you know, he kind of manipulated me. He made me feel like I was nothing without him and that no one else would love me or deal with me. He knew my weaknesses and had me wrapped me around his finger. He ended up convincing me to move to Alabama the second I turned 18 because he was going to school there. We lived together for almost 3 years and he had me enroll in the same classes as him so that he didn’t have to do anything. He also didn’t let me work which was another way for him to control me. He didn’t let me go out, I couldn’t have friends. If I was talking to someone online or in person he would always question me about them and get really jealous regardless of who they were. I felt trapped and was really depressed. My way to cope with my depression was with was food and I ended up gaining over 90 pounds in two years. I couldn’t even walk ten minutes without getting shin splints because all I did was stay at home. It was the worst feeling. Then he started telling me, “Oh, you’re fat now, I have to cheat on you because your body disgusts me, I don’t even want to have sex with you, I wish you were skinny and blonde”. At that point I was 19, and we had been together for 3 years and in those 3 years he had fucked with my head so much that I just did whatever he wanted, let him say whatever he wanted and didn’t fight back so that he wouldn’t leave me. Because I wasn’t close to my mom or family, I didn’t feel like I could reach out to them for help. When I was 20, my mom got engaged and was living in DC, so I came up for the wedding and I didn’t go back. It was still really difficult for the first 2 years living here. I wasn’t used to such a big city and I didn’t even know who I even was as a person anymore so I was extremely insecure when meeting new people. I finally changed my lifestyle and diet and started losing some of the weight I gained and could finally dance again, and it brought me back to myself. It brought me back to everything being okay again and now I can’t stop ::laughs::

What do you feel accomplished with?

I guess, that I’m even here today. I’ve struggled with depression and anxiety and always felt that I was fending for myself and that no one else was here for me. There were many times that I just wanted to give up and wondered what is even the point? Who even cares about me? But I’m still here and I’m really happy with my life now and the direction it’s going.

What do you think of relationships? Platonic, sexual and otherwise.

I think human connection is really important. I cherish my platonic relationships more than my romantic ones. Dating is hard for me because I still struggle with a lot of my past trauma and because of it, I’m still insecure and hold a lot of my feelings back because I don’t want to get hurt again. Even though I still deal with the trauma, I’m thankful it happened because I’ve been in a couple of romantic relationships where I’ve seen the red flags of abuse and I now have the courage to call them out and end them before it gets worse for myself or for anyone else. I’ve had some beautiful relationships since that ex that have showed me what being in a healthy and loving relationship is like, but right now I have a lot of goals and ambitions and things to work out with myself, so as much as a romantic relationship would be nice, the best thing for me is to be in a relationship with myself and I’m totally okay with that.

Johnny Fantastic

Johnny Fantastic


Date of Interview: December 9, 2016

Name: Johnny Fantastic

Age: 33

Pronouns: They/Them, sometimes He/Him

Location: Washington, DC


If you were an underwater creature, which one would you be?

An animal or character or underwater creature… I suppose I would probably take my run at being an octopus. Because, it would be a completely different experience from being a human being, like being a species that’s constantly being tugged downward by gravity, constantly struggling against gravity to keep upright and walk. Instead, be free from that force more or less to kind of expand all around and swing all my body parts in all directions.

What are you passionate about?

I’m passionate about music. I’m passionate about history. I’m passionate about emotions. I’m passionate about science. I’m particularly interested in lesser known chapters of history. I’m really interested in presidents who are not the known ones like, the really out there ones that no one knows the names of. Like Franklin Pierce or William Henry Harrison who was only president for a month and died. And I’m generally interested in all histories of political movements around the world and how they connect to what might be happening now in the world. The small facts play into the connections because the small facts always turn out to be the butterfly effect that caused the whole collapse. Like the small incident in Sarajevo in 1914, the assignation of the archduke, that triggered the worst war that the world has ever seen. So I like to find out about little events that happened in history that are lesser known, but if you follow those events you might see that if something little hadn’t have happened then the big thing might not have happened either.

What do you think of relationships? Platonic, sexual and otherwise.

Platonic, sexual and otherwise? Umm I think right now I’m pretty against them, I’m living a very solo existence. I find that I like to have complete control of my time and I am not really good at sharing my time with people unless it’s impromptu, Like, “Hey! We’re going here and there you are!” And I’m like, “Great! Let’s go!” But I’m having trouble dealing with relationships because I clam up when people want to see me or spend time with me at all, through text or even email. It’s like… gah! Get out of my life! Get out of my head! That’s probably romantic. Friendships are like… friendships are the same way though. The friends that I’m closest with are the ones that leave me the most alone but somehow end up being in my life a lot anyways despite that fact. Yeah, I like that kind of treatment.

You said you’re passionate about emotions, does that tie into relationship?

Yeah, I’m still in the stage of my life where I see relationships as like, mythical, religious experiences of love and all that stuff so I seem to have the ability to only engage with people in either a fully passionate emotional way. Or to be really unaffected and to not want to be in relationships at all. So, I’m leaning towards the not wanting to be in relationships at all for that reason ::laughs::.

What is something you struggle with?

Something I still struggle with… Ugh. Concentration. Focusing on things. Keeping my, interest in what I’m currently doing without other thought. Like, if I start working on a song and I’ve been working on it for ten minutes, something in my head will pop up like, “But who wrote the article in 1900 that really started the Yellow Press that really started the Spanish-American War on Cuba? I need to look that up”, so now I’m looking it up and “Oh wow, like, it was William Randolph Hearst, I need to learn more about William Randolph Hearst”. So then I’ll watch a documentary on William Randolph Hearst and that could go on for like, 20 minutes and that can turn into me thinking I need to stop watching documentaries and how I need to see acting, I need to see like, real emotion, I need to see something! Then I’ll want to watch Citizen Kane because that’s sort of about William Randolph Hearst, you know. It could go on endlessly and it normally ends up in porn at some point ::laughs::. Sooooo concentration. Started with a song, ends with some dongs ::laughs::.

What is something you’re afraid of for the world?

That humans continue to exist ::laughs::. ‘Cause that would be really bad for the world, if we’re talking about the actual planet. Actually it doesn’t matter really, all things are natural so I guess, if the earth is going to become a wasteland of global warming, that’s just what it will be. It will keep spinning around the sun until the sun eats it up… So, I think the thing I fear for the world is that, is something a little more immediate and is effecting my own personal life and for those that are alive now, is that we lose touch with our desire to understand the world more and grow our brains and be smarter and learn more things and discover more ways to live and be more accepting of the new kinds of ways of living that keep coming up with as we keep moving forward through time. I’m afraid of that reversing and humanity going back to darker times.

What is something you feel accomplished with?

I feel good that I’ve managed to maintain my identity as I like my identity, without having to coat switch so much. I’m proud that I’m 33 and I’m still who I am. I haven’t cut my hair or put on a suit or like… modified my language to be more normy or go to brunch or whatever. I’m proud that I’m resisting that. “That” being what I’m told is the inevitable result of aging. That I’m being true to myself.


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