Tuesday, December 28, 2010
The holidays present the rare but welcomed opportunity to see my big sister Shannon. As the years have gone by, I've seen less and less of her. After flourishing as an undergraduate writer, she ventured to California to complete her Master's degree in creative writing. Sadly, I never took advantage of her temporary presence out West. She recently moved back to Ohio, but I have, of course, since been displaced in Chicago. It seems that our geography hasn't matched up since I was in high school. I suppose I could take this opportunity to become extremely sentimental. My sister has been my best friend my entire life; no doubt this will never change, despite the miles between us or the milestones paving our separate and succinct paths. This blog entry is sounding a little mushy and trite. I cannot muster the perfect string of words to adequately describe my love, admiration, and gratitude for my sister (she is much more equipped). And, I cannot believe that it has taken me so long to take her picture. But then again, the past few years have plagued me with a selfish sort of tunnel vision, and maybe I am still suffering from this crippling blindness. (Refer to the portraits of my parents that are only just now surfacing, after I've been fairly diligent about photographing what's near and dear to me for the past four years.) Christmas at home this year was one of the most humbling holidays I've shared with my family. Despite the rapid whirl (and, at times, what feels like the stagnant slump) of my young adult life, they have my heart.
Sunday, December 19, 2010
I am often convinced that I can only produce a well-constructed series of words on occasion. I was reading my friend Ellee's online journal this morning, and in my response to her holiday-inspired sentiments on love and life, I was able to accurately pin-point my own feelings for the first time in months. I responded to her musings with, in essence, the following confession:
Lately, I have found myself confused, sensitive, needy, defensive, compulsive, and impatient. Lately, I have found myself fond, hopeful, relaxed, reflective, comforted, and protected. Some days I struggle to find inspiration in my fixed routine, working over 40 hours a week, explaining the health benefits of quinoa and Kombucha and almond milk to young and fit and attractive investment bankers who regard me with the utmost indifference because I am behind a counter in a brown hat and an apron, and they have company money to dispense on overpriced lunches and dinners. And they have security and companionship in it. Nevermind that I have a college education, a refreshing sense of humor, perfect posture, a fantastic memory, zero cavities, and just as many hopes and dreams and aspirations. I want to remain focused on the positive with my hands submerged in soapy water, dry and cracking from the scrubbing, the bleaching, the blending and tossing and chopping and grilling, and the perpetual exchange of American Express cards. I wonder where the time has gone. I’ve lived here for 6 months now and I still have no idea what I ultimately want to be doing. I am not unhappy, just uncertain.
In the end, it has taken little self-reflection to reveal my biggest flaw: a persistent tendency to look for problems.
It's Sunday, my day of the week to recuperate and relinquish the bad energy that has accumulated during the course of the week. This blog entry serves many purposes, and it's been awhile since I've really utilized the strength of my own voice. I am 23 years old. I support myself in one of the largest cities in the United States. I have a loving family in Ohio, wonderful friends far and wide, and a job that sustains my belly, my bank account, and my loving heart (and refer once more to my loving family and wonderful friends). I am still wandering around this big city, my eyes bright and shiny and full of wonder. It's the holiday season, so as is customary of this time, I am trying ever so earnestly to count my blessings. I am trying to be patient. I am trying to let my life happen without feeling like time is slipping away from me. I am trying to enjoy sleeping in when I can, photographing a beautiful face when I can, taking a bubble bath when I can, eating leftover chocolate cake when I can, and falling in love when I am.