This pandemic has changed so much for us all. It has interrupted the flow of businesses, education, engaging with friends and family, and most relevant to artists like myself, the music industry. Coming into 2020, I was wrapping up my second independent tour, which was partially spent opening up for the legendary Indigo Girls, headlining Seattle and Chicago Pride, headlining the Loud Women Festival in London, and much more. I was devastated when I realized that live in-person shows would have to pause until the far distant future. I was trying my best to think fast and pivot with the circumstances but had to change everything I was planning on doing in the year 2020.
Fast forward to entering this past October; I find myself stepping into a dream I have had since the very beginning of TxLips Band, LLC.; building out The TxLips Academy, which is a virtual music academy in which TxLips gang band members teach girls, non-binary, and LGBTQ+ youth in an effort to inspire the next generation of rockstars. But right after starting the TxLips Academy, I lost my job. I worked part-time for an Atlanta nonprofit with a minimal staff of two people (including myself). The Director was a person that did not care to consider my health and safety amidst the increasing pandemic numbers. I was working in a very toxic environment, one that was tearing me down instead of building me up but still, I felt myself placing the stress of being creative in my business endeavors on my shoulders. Our TxLips Academy partners were depending on this summer to be excellent. Not just for the Girls Rock Camp staff around the world, but for the youth that have been forced to be young kids and teens amidst a crazy ass time in history. I had to pivot and push through to the finish line quickly, and I am proud my team and I made this summer one to remember for the campers.
One lesson 2020 taught me amidst all of this is balance. My mom would and still does tell me that “life is about finding a balance. There is nothing wrong with wanting to push through to your goals. It’s amazing to have the work ethic that your father and I passed down to you and your sisters from the generations of Logans and Tollivers. But, you have to find a balance so that you can see those things you desire through to the end. You cannot pour from an empty cup.” It took me a while to understand this, and it took even longer to put this action. And I admit I still work at this every day, but the truth is, I am human. I work hard for what I want and what I believe in, but I have learned over the years what balance looks like to me. I have learned to prioritize my “me time” and have learned to be strict with that. Everything else will get done.
To all my boss ass females out there: I know the world puts a lot on our shoulders. I know that society generally expects more from women and that we can sometimes push ourselves harder than we ought to. But I encourage all of us, including myself, to take time when needed and don’t feel bad about it. Say no when you need and don’t apologize for it. You are only as good as the energy you can give out. But don’t forget to save some of your energy for yourself.
You can follow Guitar Gabby on social media @guitargabby, @thetxlipsband, and by visiting her website www.txlips.com.