if i don’t have red, i use blue.
Amy Grace, A Beautiful Life Photo : Motherhood With A Camera
my mom always told my brother and i not to compare our insides to other people’s outsides. this really wise advice seems to root itself more deeply as i get older. but i still have my moments of forgetting, of feeling less than, of feeling like the beautiful mess is just the muddy kind. there are many of them. i look at my mistakes and then i try to see the wonder of what i have done right. i worry about the hundreds of things that might rock the precious balance of our lives, then i try to breathe through the bumps that come. and when i take pictures, i try to balance out these feelings, balance the real with the dreams and feelings.
but a picture can frame the way we feel it all. the love feels perfect, and so i really try to capture that undercurrent in my real life – the live action variety. who are we if we are not the love we feel? so while i do not want to tell someone else’s story, i do want to dig deeper than the surface allows, in these wild, frenetic, untidy, loving times. how many of us show the whole picture? not many, i think. to tell our own truth is a beautiful gift. i think real does not have to be reserved for only the hard parts, and bad parts. we have only what is in front of us and within us. some days i am ready with my camera, others i am busy juggling those very things, keeping our lives afloat, letting a tear or two fall.
the life in front of us is rarely going to show up the way we once dreamed it. being a mother has shown me that i am not a planner, i have infinite patience for my kids but little for myself, that surprises and unpredictability can bless and haunt us. know that i find myself swimming against the current more days than not, that often, the shadows are more clear than the light, that i have a long and deep story that colors everything i do. every picture i take speaks of this, but the love laced between the lines gives me hope. my kids give me hope. so i will keep looking for the truth and beauty amidst the mess. that is where i want us to live out our story. i want to tell their story, not write a fiction, and i suspect i am not alone in this. none of us are perfect, but the love we have for our kids is close when we try our best.