A long overdue spilling of guts.

I'm not sure that my blog is the perfect platform for this post, or these words, but here they are regardless, for better or worse.

Lately I've been completely overwhelmed. With life and with business and business and business and business and busy-ness. The to-do list grows and the days fly by and the emails come in and that's stressful. Or they don't and that's really stressful. And I unleash a social media storm asking people to be part of things that I believe in with all my heart. To sign up for photo sessions. To let me come photograph their kiddos in a park or in a studio or in LA or at their schools or on a boat with a goat or in a box with a fox. Anywhere, really, because I adore what I do that much. And then I ask my music-loving friends to come to concerts that I host in lofts or art galleries or backyards because that's where live music feels the best to me; surrounded by people, sitting in close quarters, actually listening to the music. And then I latch on to projects started by people I love, doing rad things that I can't help but want to support and shout from the rooftops because I want other people's projects to succeed just as much, if not more, than my own. 

And then I get completely exhausted and defeated.

And I know I have as many hours in a day as Beyonce, and that I need to just Keep Calm and Everything On, but really what I want to do is hide in the woods and be silent for a while. To turn off instagram and twitter and facebook and text messages and phone calls and to just Shut. Up. If only for a minute, but more likely for days + weeks on end. 

I've chosen to live this life where everything I do is a labor of love and I feel like I fail far more than I succeed. Most days the work piles up and the bills really pile up and I feel like nothing I can do will ever bring those mountains back down to mole hills and I know, without a doubt, that working a 'normal' job would be less draining on me in nearly every way, because most days I give everything I have and it feels like I've barely scratched the surface of what is needed of me. 

But then these things happen. I photograph a child laughing as hard as they've ever laughed or I sit in a roomful of wide-eyed people that have never listened so closely to live music before. Or I talk to people about their upcoming photo shoots and they're over-the-top giddy about the possibilities we're going to create, and the visual nostalgia they'll be able to hold onto forever because I'm lucky enough that someone created this magical device that captures light by the split-second, preserving it for lifetimes.

I wish I was better about posting my work and writing long, introspective things about the people involved, because it's not that I don't have the words, it's just that my introverted self hasn't figured out exactly how to do that yet without my overly empathic self sounding like a gushy mess. I also haven't figured out how to take the time to do that while also doing all those other things in that to-do mountain over there. But, lovely people that I'm fortunate enough to cross paths with: I see it all. Parents, I see the way that you look at your kids with complete adoration and longing to make the world beautiful for them. I see the way they look at you with total trust and innocent glee. Musicians and artists, your constant fight isn't lost on me and the thought, dedication and energy that you put into your craft is unparalleled. The world is far better of with you in it.

I know I'm not alone in this. I know everyone feels this exact same way at same point. Maybe at some point in every single day, so writing this is perhaps unnecessary and redundant. Or perhaps it's more necessary than ever and I've caught you at the right moment where you needed someone else to say "Holy SHIT this is hard!" And then you also needed someone to say "Damn the torpedoes; full speed ahead!" 

So, friends: today I'm just going to go ahead and give you all I've got because maybe I don't need to be in the middle of nowhere, by myself. Maybe I need to be right here, doing exactly what I'm doing, with all of you.

Photo by Eliesa Johnson

Photo by Eliesa Johnson

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