It’s been a long time. Like a really long time since I posted on this blog. Anyway, when I was thinking about what word I wanted to choose for this year, it was going to be:
To begin though I need to tell you a story from March 2020. I was about to be furloughed from my full-time position because the automotive industry was hit hard by COVID-19. I began attending multiple online photography workshops from Tvibit, a Norwegian based company that supports young artists in various mediums in Tromso, Norway. For one week’s workshop challenge, we were challenged with documenting parking lots or something mundane and ordinary like that. Considering the pandemic was full blown at this time, the parking lots would be empty. For some reason that month, I decided I wanted to try and visit the Merrimack Premium Outlets. Try, being the operative word. I Googled it and it noted it was CLOSED. But my curiosity gets the better of me and I still had to check it out, so I drove up there alone. Only for it to be blocked by four or five police trucks. I felt a little stupid, because I had no particular reason to be there (other than to take photos of an empty parking lot), and proceeded to say “I’ll just turn around,” knowing I would not be let through the barrier for that reason alone.
In the following months, my mom and I visited the Outlets several other times, including around my birthday at the beginning of September. At that time, I again had I sense that I’d need a new job based on how I was approached by my manager, etc. At that point, I’d started connecting with one of the salesmen at Columbia Sportswear.
Do you believe your heart and/or soul can be guided to a particular place and/or person? Like you have this sixth sense about it? Either from a photograph (as happened for my favorite place on Earth: Senja, or was until recently) and from frequent visits to local shops? I know it sounds completely strange and weird. But some things cannot be explained.
1. Who you’re with:
This year has been a tough one to say the least. There’s been changes, growth, and transformation. There’s been lots of love. LOTS. OF. LOVE. I won’t name the person who has given it to me, out of respect for his privacy.
I am one to both hesitate and jump into LOVE quickly. Because once I make that choice, I am all in. So much so that I drown myself in it. A metaphor that, while seems beautiful, can be dangerous if you don’t know how to swim. Alternatively, the better analogy would be to swim in it.
- Savor the moments
- Be present and alive
- Live every moment to your fullest (within reason)
- Find peace with those you love (and who love you in return)
- Find peace within yourself
Songwriters and artists alike know and are able to express the crux of love; they write about it like Keith Urban in “The Fighter”.
What if I fall (I won’t let you fall)
What if I cry I promise I’ll never make you cry
And if I get scared (I’ll hold you tighter)
When they’re tryna get to you baby I’ll be the fighter
Or Paulo Coelho in The Alchemist, which describes a journey a boy makes in the desert to become a man and find who or what his treasure is. And there are many more examples. Sometimes it is spoken or written about of being in love and in loss.
As much as I am a hopeless romantic, I don’t believe that what Keith Urban wrote/sang about in The Fighter is completely true. No matter what, at some point, someone you love will disappoint you or make you cry (hopefully unintentionally). We have to be able to balance friendships with our relationships, some people are easier at doing it than I am
Love is a beautiful thing. It sometimes grows (and fades) like the seasons. It’s not always about the happiness you give and/or receive, because you will face tough times. Together or alone. Usually having someone by your side is better, but finding the whom is a challenge; especially for someone like me who is picky with whom I spend my time with.
As a writer and artist, I suppose I have a quiet, private love that is expressed . I want to remember the times we share, so I will document it in some way, shape, or form. Most people find that scary or intimidating. Believe me, I have asked my friends. I have to ensure whomever I am with understands that aspect of who I am.
2. What you do:
I am a multi-passionate individual. Over the past five or six years, I have gradually learned what my purpose and/or callings are. (See the below list). I strive for perfection in my art, and so sometimes I should learn to do something imperfectly. A case in point would be painting or illustration. If I took control of this power/calling, I am afraid I would be both more reclusive and loved for my talent. But not necessarily because of who I am.
I am perhaps hardest on myself on this one. It is a gift that, if used more, would bring me so much joy. And yet sometimes I am afraid of it. I am afraid to express whatever I am feeling or thinking and putting it down on paper. It is one side to a coin to being a walking contradiction. That is something I am ok with. We are all complex individuals.
On the flip side, photography is a way to capture someone’s or some place’s essence. There’s a saying that goes “a picture is worth a thousand words”, and that can be true. Some having the talent and ability to be a writer and a photographer must be intimidating to some people. But both are a part of who I am.
This past year I started school again, to become a massage therapist. It came with much thought and consideration. And it was something I dismissed about myself. I know sometimes it will be difficult and hard, but what road(s) I take will always have some hurdles, whether through self-expression or as a massage therapist.