Updated: Jan 26
Not long ago, the artist Dismoc Le Ma did a Q&A interview with VoyageSTL, and he disclosed some heartfelt stories about himself. To read the full article, please go here... During the interview, Dismoc Le Ma was asked the following question: Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not, what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way? Dismoc Le Ma stated, "The road has been the furthest from smooth. As I look back on my journey, all my accomplishments are overshadowed by darkness fueled by continuous family issues and imbalanced relationships." Dismoc Le Ma subsequently went on to state that 2019 was one of the best and worst years of his life. He then went on to state that 2019 was the year his mother almost died. Dismoc Le Ma briefly described his experience but did not go into details about his past imbalanced relationships, as he stated previously. I contacted Dismoc Le Ma (Dismoc) to see if he wanted to further explain or add to the statement he made in the interview revolving around that question. Dismoc Le Ma (Dismoc) stated he did and agreed to do a Q&A. Interviewer: In your interview with VoyageSTL you spoke about your mother's health. Can you elaborate more on how things transpired that day? Dismoc: Wow, it blows my mind to think about it, but I was home taking a nap. While I was sleeping, I had a dream about the situation. My dream was nearly a replica of what happened. I woke up in cold sweats and my body was dripping in sweat as if I was walking in the rain. I'm somewhat superstitious, so when I woke up, I instantly started knocking on wood. At that moment, something told me to look at my phone. When I looked at my phone, I saw several missed calls and texts from my mom. She basically was like, she needed to go to the hospital. I called her back, and I didn't get the response I wanted, so I drove to her place, which was like 20 minutes away. On my way there, I called my grandmother; we met at my mom's place. My mother was on the floor, unresponsive when I walked through the door. I immediately prepared to perform CPR, but thankfully she was breathing, but her pulse was faint. The fire department arrived within 10 minutes or so, but there wasn't much they could do. They told us the paramedics weren't going to take my mom to the nearest hospital; instead, they would take her to a different hospital that was further away. Then they started spewing a bunch of political babble about which hospital had certain jurisdictions over the area my mother lived in. At that point, I was done waiting, nearly 30 minutes had passed, so my step-grandfather and I carried my mom down the steps to my car, and 5 minutes later, I was at the hospital. My grandmother later called me while she was speaking to the paramedics that later arrived, confirming what the fire department said was true. They were shocked that I made it to the hospital so fast.
Interviewer: In your previous interviews, you spoke about imbalanced relationships and finding alignment. Can you elaborate more on that? Dismoc: Yes, it brings me to my recent exhibition, "Respect! The Woman In The Red Dress" the concept is about imbalanced relationships and how to achieve alignment. It took me a long time to understand the true meaning of alignment. During the pandemic, I had the opportunity to sit down and self-reflect. I came to realize I held so many fences towards people. When I say fence, I mean the actual physical presence of building a wall between you and another person. So when someone offends you, you unknowingly build a wooden post. If any other offense happens, you build another wooden post. Eventually, so many wooden posts are built that you have a fence in front of you and that person. When a fence is built, there's no way to communicate with the person on the other side. The more I thought about it, the more I realized the issues weren't worth giving up that relationship for. So I began uprooting those wooden posts. Too many people are dying during these times, some of whom I had great relationships with. If I genuinely had/have love for a person, the last thing I would ever want to see is death near them. Interviewer: Can you elaborate further on some of the issues you were having and how they affected your past relationships? Dismoc: Some of the issues were mainly work and my mom's health. Other things occurred, but they weren't a focal point. Many people don't understand the business of working in the creative industry because it's not a normal 9-5 job. Many people don't realize I began my design career at 19. I wasn't even finished with college, but I had a continuous rotation of clients. Over the years, I've changed how I do business and the amount of business I do at one time. It was a time when I had 10–20 projects going on at the same time, and some of them were due on the same day. I had to deal with 10 different personalities and sometimes 10 psychopathic personalities. And that's not an overstatement; that's a fact! Seriously, one time I was brought in to work on a group assignment. They told me upfront that the client was a headache. During the project, a meeting was called, and they wanted all the designers there. When I arrived at the building, the parking lot was flooded with police cars. All I know is that the client got into a dispute with the Design Manager, and the Design Manager called security to escort him off the premises. After that, the client went berserk and tried to attack everybody in the office. I saw the police put the client into the police car, and he was bloody! That's just one incident, but probably the worst. I also dealt with several individuals that did bad business, which resulted in me suing them, and I won every case. But every win came with an abundance of stress, especially when dealing with lawyers and the court. Which resulted in me feeling burned out, and I ultimately acquired the concept of working smarter, not harder, and understanding that all money is not good money. I had a lot of growing pains, but you live and you learn. I should remind you that I started doing this at 19. I'm currently 30 now, so I truly had to learn on the go. So the combination of youth, self-reliance, immaturity, overconfidence, and a lot of sarcasm can be detrimental to any relationship. Dismoc: I'm glad I've never allowed my work to consume most of my time and take time away from my past relationships. When I got older, I realized that I had to learn how to decompress before speaking or seeing any of my exes. But just when I thought I had mastered the technique of decompression, bad timing set in. She called, I answered, and it led to an argument. But just before she called me, I got into a heated argument with a client. I truly disliked working with this individual, but he had a weird, toxic way of bringing the best out of me. But as I stated before, all money is not good money, so I was done working with him after that. Six months later, he died, and I was the last person he contacted before he passed away. That hurt my soul, and I was distraught after that. We had been working together for over five years at that point. Even though he was hard to work with, I learned a lot from him. The argument I had with her put a dent in our relationship that couldn't be repaired. So during that time, I ultimately took a double loss. But that's life; we can't predict the future or someone's reactions. We can only control how we react and learn from our mistakes. I don't want to sound like I'm making excuses or asking for pity. I accept responsibility for the roles I've played in all of my life's situations. I love the work I do. I love being an artist, I love being a designer, I love being a creative. I had to make adjustments and learn how to separate work from home, which is hard to do because being an artist is a lifestyle for me. However, the designer in me can definitely be off by 5pm.
Interviewer: What do you want the readers to learn from this Q&A and what are your final words? Dismoc: Life is a continuation of growth. We learn and grow every day, and humans are the greatest adapters. Change is the nature of beauty.
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Lukumi Arlota – Contributing Writer
Lukumi Arlota is a mental health advocate, black empowerment activist, public speaker, and business owner.