Michaela Johnson was born and raised in Decatur, Ga where she first began dancing at her church, which inspired her dreams to become a dancer. From then, Johnson has recently graduated from Spelman College where she obtained her degree in Drama with a concentration in Dance. Johnson is now a company member of Axam Dance Theatre Experience, and also teaches dance at the Fulton County Southwest Performing Arts Center. She has experiences in choreography and performance. Johnson plans on continuing her career by combining both passions for dance and event planning to create artistic events for the arts community.
Photographs by Ciara Jones.
This poem was inspired by the poem “Where I’m From” composed by George Ella Lyon.
Read her poem here: http://www.georgeellalyon.com/where.html
And enjoy mine.
Where I’m From
By Ciara Jones
I am from lakes and trees and strip malls in-between
I am from suburban subdivisions with a synagogue on every block just a freeway ride away from the city where theatre lived along with museums and my history
I am from an actuary educators teachers practical dreamers
I am from the bourgeoisie and black power
I am from 100 ways to cook and prepare chicken
I am from an endless supply of grits bacon and eggs
I am from millions of mugs for hot chocolate coffee and tea
I am from I love you and greeting strangers
I am from faster, stronger, tighter, deeper, higher, lower, slower and quicker
I am not from never good enough but I am from always try better than before
I am from hugs high five and hand shakes
I am from improv on the streets of Italia to Italian singing at Temple Israel
I am from embarrassing moments falling on my face
Shining perfectly in the spotlight.
While I was in South Korea for study travel with Spelman, one of our assignments was to create a personal vision statement. Not a mission statement a Vision Statement. For me the biggest difference between the two is that one is full of goals and a driving force and the other is simply how you see yourself living on the inside out.
Here are some notes I took so that you can create your own personal vision statement.
Your statement should:
- Align with your vision
- Engage ambiguity
- Cultivate stillness
- Attend to emotion
- Attend to judgement
- Attend to physical sensation
- Notice your thoughts
- Examine the Judgment
- Commit to being your highest and best as a human
Crafting my Personal Vision Statement (use words in the present tense):
- Being in the moment
- Looking forward to a positive future
- Embracing all situation
- Knowing personal limits
- Don’t give others power to control your own emotions
- Not letting thoughts cloud my judgment
- Being aware of my mind and body at all times
You can also start by putting one word on a sticky note that you would like to accomplish.
-Mindful- Communicative- Awareness- Emotional Stability- Knowledgeable- Compassion- Curiosity- Patience- Present-
Share with me your personal mission statement!
I am in the here and now focusing on the present in which I have so much to be grateful for
Staying present in my mind and body knowing where I step and how I step and observing the waves I leave behind
As I’m on this journey right now I am searching for colors for uniqueness for laughter for depth
I hear each breath I take and others breathing around me because the breath informs all movement and action that is going on and that is to come
I say hi and bye to all the thoughts that cross my mind so I can stay focussed on the experience I’m having right now
We learn and grow from our life experiences. Here is a little snap chat of what my training was like growing up and how I learned from it to be a more confident dancer. Enjoy!