There's much ado about appreciating the everyday lately. And that is fantastic. I really, truly believe in this. It grounds my highfalutin dreams and lets me know I have much to be thankful for when I get too caught up in "could" and "what-if" and "if-only". I believe that there is beauty in almost anything, you just have to be able to open yourself up to it.
But I also don't want to turn it into a cliche. While there is beauty in the everyday, there can also be a big steaming pile of crap in the everyday. That's just life. And it's a lot easier to pick up the camera when I see the most gorgeous stream of light come in through the bedroom window than it is to pick up the camera when there's bills to pay and I have to take money from whatever I was saving up for to cover them, again.
I struggle a bit with this concept. I want to be as honest as possible, and some days aren't sunshine and rainbows. I don't want anyone to ever feel like their life isn't as good as mine because they only see the 1/250th of a second I chose to display out of the thousands of moments that happened that day. In some weird way, there IS a beauty to the not-so-good but it's a concept only understood in retrospect. Everything is better with time and distance. And there's a sense of "I managed it. I got through it. I'm stronger than I thought I was."
I find myself drawn to the books...the music...the photographs...the tv shows that are gritty. Painful, even. Tough choices characters have to make, where there are no bad guys, no good guys, just a lot of murky in-betweens. It provides me with perspective. Life is, after all, mostly comprised of in-betweens.
On the other hand, the times in life that typically suck are the times when I shouldn't have my presence behind the camera. I still feel like an asshole when I photograph my daughter crying - even if I'd never provoke her for the sake of an image. Even if it's a pointless cry worthy of "Reasons my son is crying"...there's still that twinge of guilt.
Life is full of nuances and emotions.
It's eating a Whopper Jr. in the parking lot of CVS waiting for my daughter's antibiotics when only the night before I swore to myself this week I'd take charge of my ever-increasing weight...only to succumb to the comfort of a cheap, satisfying and temporarily stress-numbing meal. Maybe tomorrow will be different.
It's coming home to a kitchen full of dirty dishes after a long day at work and knocking a glass off the counter, only to watch it break into a thousand nearly-invisible shards I'd later get stuck in my bare feet.
It's the guilt from knowing I need to put down my damn phone. An easy escape from the icky feelings deep inside I know I should address. Not wanting to be alone with myself.
But it's also the feeling of hot sticky toddler breath in my face, and clammy little hands reaching towards the sky to be picked up. She clings to us harder than ever, and though the daily toddler crying battles can get tiresome, I know I won't have those arms needing to be wrapped around my neck forever. It's a bittersweet thing.
It's the joy in her eyes as she hands me a book to read and curls up real tight underneath my arm. Even if I've read this book 20 times that day, and I don't read the words with the same joie de vivre, it doesn't matter to her. It makes her happy, and I would do anything to see that smile.