I've been distracted from things I should be concentrating on.
I've been having incredible people fall into my life.
A friend and I got to take photos in the Arts and Sciences Auditorium here at my university. For weeks, I wasn't sure what I wanted the photos to look like. I wasn't sure if I could muster up enough creativity to fit each personality. One of the girls I was taking photos of came up with an idea of balloons. We wanted it to look like she was getting carried away by them. Sometimes life makes me want to do this, float away with a bouquet of painted balloons, and wave goodbye to the earth below.
they carried us.
It's hard to describe my life lately, because I can't even remember what the date is sometimes. I feel like every day I crawl out of a stack of papers and books and take on the next task. I guess the correct word would be chaos. I substitute meals for cups filled with dark roast coffee filled up to the brim. But I feel like between the moments where I have to slow my heart down because of stress, I find such beauty in the little things. I found these poppies in the store and immediately knew that this is how I was feeling (photo below). I feel tangled and wrapped up in things.
we aren't letting our hearts collect dust
The last photo is one that I am absolutely in love with. Poor Nori, she lets me paint on her face, and this time, she let me glue moss onto her skin. I was walking through the dollar store and I found a bag of moss, looked at it and had no clue what I would do with it but I thought it might be alright. After I glued this stuff onto her face, I wasn't sure what I thought. It definitely looked different, and N was being awesome about it. But after I started taking photos, they quickly turned into some of my favorites from the shoot.
This just reminds me that we are roots. With earth day happening this past week, I felt like it really tied in to what I've been studying and hearing.
we are roots.
Thank you to all the girls who modeled for me this Friday. Your patience and faith in me really contributed to the fantastic memories.
I have so much to do and I can't seem to concentrate on it. It's incredible how much that needs to get done by the end of the year and it is a looming dark cloud over my head. I can feel my heart sink into a stationary spot in the corner and beat faster because of my anxiousness about finals. So I take breaks, I concentrate on the feeling of my heart beating to the rhythm of plucking banjo strings coming from my computer and let the moment just be. I miss the times where I knew where I was going in my life and I can't seem to find them again. I am running in the direction that seems best for my life and I am jumping hurdles as quickly as I can. I am realizing that not everyone agrees with my lifestyle, and not everyone thinks I am making good decisions for my future.
"few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts"
I've tried to write for a couple days now, and it resulted in many "draft" posts. I felt like nothing I said was good enough, I wasn't saying things that mattered or people would want to hear. I feel like I lecture sometimes and I don't feel good about doing that either. So I start writing, get a paragraph down and then press the delete button so the computer can reverse my typing and get rid of all the things that aren't good.
My good friend Ann, presented at my school tonight. It was an emotional presentation definitely, since a lot of it was about my uncle. When the first video of him came up on the screen, seeing him move made me cry. It is hard to think about that he once moved, that he once was tangible, and nothing was "in his memory". Its sometimes hard to think about those days, because they seem like they are further away than I would like them to be. But I know that everything in my life is happening for a reason, and the gears are turning.
Ann's talk was mostly on how you can do anything you want. It sounds cliche, but so many people get caught up in "I could never do that". Why? I remember once when I was 12 I told my friend who was an adult that I wanted to be a photographer for National Geographic. She told me not to even try, that I couldn't make it because its so competitive. Although I'm not photographing for NG currently, I'm pushing it and I am so glad I didn't listen to her- because she was wrong.
The days leading up to this presentation I knew it would be kind of hard. So I put some incense in the box, whipped around my room, putting things in place and watching the smoke dance up in crisp ribbons around my window. Feeling more organized, I felt like my thoughts were more in line and more ready to deal with anything to come my way. I made myself breakfast with 2 eggs with turkey with cracked pepper, black olives, sharp cheddar cheese and avocados, along with strawberry yogurt with pomegranate granola on top. The last couple days have felt like I've been drifting through. Getting things done ahead of time, being organized, and more prepared for what is coming next in my life. Big things are happening.
I'm moving (so excited)
I'm going to Yosemite (sends butterflies to my stomach, but thats good)
I'm shooting 3 (!!!!) weddings in June, all back to back weekends.
My photography is making me happier than I ever thought possible, and more alive than I knew I could be- when you are focused on seeing things that other people look over, you see more details. It's so incredible.
And most of all, I have come to terms with the fact if our team doesn't get the grant, it doesn't mean I should stop pursuing it.
I can feel spring seeping into my bones. It makes me want mason jars with little green stems of plants creeping up the middle. I feel like a solar panel, and the more sun I am able to gather in, the more energy I have. It makes me want canoes and kayaks and rocks to climb. It makes me remember my bare toes on green grass and bluegrass music that I can dance to.
I love this time of year particularly because it makes me more positive. I have been watching friends go through some hard things lately. I've watched hearts break and life crumble in front of someone's feet. All that comes to mind is:
"Sometimes the only way is jumping. I hope you're not afraid of heights"
(thank you D. Powell and Gavin Degraw)
Seeing someone you care about go through something painful never feels good. In fact, to some degree I think it actually physically hurts. But, seeing these kinds of trials makes me so much more grateful for my own life. I am in a good stable point and it makes me happy that I can be a shoulder to lean on for these other people.
It's being a root in some sense. An emotional root. I completely attribute being able to stay positive through these situations to God.
It's funny how we make plans. Because like my own and many other people's that I have known, we all have some sort of 'grand plan' for our life. We set marks on our mental calenders to do "this" by some date in time. And I find that every time I try to plan something for my life, it never turns out the way I expect it to, or it never turns out at all. But I am constantly amazed about how when one plan closes, an opportunity sprouts. Once I think I am going to do one thing with my life, I find something else that I have more passion for, that drives me more and that consumes my mind and my heart and my soul into something that I could have never imagined. In total, I find things that make me come alive.
I try to do those things more often than not. I set aside time to wrestle with Veda on the floor. I am awestruck about how much of myself I see in that dog. And when I go without her, I feel like part my soul is left behind. Our living room currently has no furniture in it. When we play, she jumps around me in circles and then rolls around on the floor, chomping at air like a dinosaur. I can't help but wonder what shes thinking.
I signed a lease on a house yesterday. It is a 3 bedroom, 1 bath basement of a house. It has a huge living room and 2 big bedrooms. Betsy and I talked all yesterday about plans of decorations and which of my photographs we were going to put on the wall. I have to tell you, I am terribly excited to move into this place. It has heated tiles in the kitchen and my brain kept me awake last night thinking about all the wonderful things we can do with the third room. I asked Betsy if I could have the room with the window (as the other bedroom doesn't have one) since I think I would utterly fail without sunlight. We move in May 1st at I have my toes tapping about all the things I can make my room into. It is a new beginning for all of us, and I'm ready for the adventure.
first: happy easter! i hope your day is filled with lots of love, family, friends, chocolate and easter eggs.
second: two things I want to talk about:
1. tangible faith
2. loving everyone
1. Like creativity and life in general, my faith has been up and down recently. This isn't to say you should believe in God, it's not to say you're wrong for not, and it's not to say that I am right. Christianity works for me, I like it but I think everyone has a reason for believing in what they do.
I guess I feel like I have been praying for some kind of tangible faith. I am such a hands-on learner, and most of my struggle comes from feeling like I don't have anything but beliefs to hold on to. And beliefs are just that; beliefs. There is nothing solid for me to see or hear or say recently that has affirmed that I am doing what I'm supposed to be doing, no guide, no direction. So, I hold tight to what I think is right, and just go in the directions that the breeze blows me in.
Easter is a special time for me, it always makes me think that I'm starting over and I have another chance.
It is where green grass pokes out of the cold and cracked earth that winter has caused.
I can feel the world taking big breaths in the spring time.
And starting over means change. I am not a huge fan of change. It switches up everything that is comfortable, and I feel like my life is a knot of string and I have to sort everything out again.
I am holding tight to everything I can grasp onto and sliding into new things. And even though it scares me stiff, I am trying to pry my heart to be open to new ideas and new plans for my life, even if it goes against things that I thought my life planned for me all along.
2. Love everyone, even if it seems like they are incapable of it themselves. Love everyone, regardless of what they have done to you.
bottom line: love unconditionally
3. (I know I didn't throw a number 3 in the outline of things I was going to write about today, but I feel like its a good addition.) I drove past a hitchhiker today and it took all my energy not to stop the car and pick him up. My thought process went from:
I would never, never hitchhike...wait, I locked my keys in my car 2 months ago, and someone picked me up.
It just brought me back to thinking long and hard about the kindness of people, and how some people are just genuine. It was hard to drive past someone that I could obviously help. However, I realize that it isn't the safest position. So maybe if there were other people in the car, I would do it differently.
Thank you for reading, thank you for being in my life. Any more volunteers for the story project? I already have 2 :)
and I've been putting off writing here because sometimes I feel like I don't have anything valuable to say.
we teach ourselves how to fit.
(people keep asking me if this is a library. This is my house..so basically the same thing.)
I was feeling a little out of inspiration, a little drained from school and exams. And then someone told me to go outside, that the notebooks full of information would wait, and the sun would not. To be more specific he said, "a grade is just some ink on a dead tree."
So I set off with the puppy across into my front yard, a huge field full of interesting smells for her and lots of inspiration for me. I always feel so inspired, a space this open encourages my creativity to come spilling out.
Also, I went home for Easter weekend.
More pictures to come.
But, for now, I am tired. And although I wrote 3 paragraphs,