Today: I am done pretending. I am done comparing. I’m letting my freak flag fly! (I love Brene Brown. She is my hero.)
And even though I wince because the Inner Cheesy Police are blaring their sirens, today I’m deciding I don’t care. I’m going to stop scouring the world for clues about what I should do, should be/wear/create/like/love.
I thought I was over this, since stickin it to the man has always been my strong point; because let’s get real here. I refused to be potty trained when I was two and left my evidence in the corners of playdates’ houses, I was doing my own hair by the age of 6 just to defy my mother, and I never follow recipes when cooking in the name of unleashing my creativity. (Someday I’ll tell you sad tales of failed from-scratch macaroni and cheese and the worst bean/crab creation you could ever fathom. Yuck.)
So that (re)commitment should be nbd for me, right? (P.S. can I please talk about how much I love tacky abreves like nbd?)
Right. It’s ridiculously simple but ridiculously hard. And I’m preaching to the choir; you already know about this. You already know that there’s a billion other people who seem to be doing whatever you want to do better than you. You already know that you feel intimidated, shy, or any other form of the I-just-want-to-curl-up-and-hide-with-a-pound-of-chocolate syndrome.
Here’s the secret:
Those people who are doing x y and z better than you? They wake up feeling bad sometimes. They don’t wake up feeling cha-ching awesome automatically and every day and without lifting a pinky finger.
And we know that in our brains, right? We know that everyone is human. But our hearts don’t get the memo very well, and they keep trying to explain to the brain that she must be mistaken. She’s got to have it wrong, somehow, because there’s no way that girl feels the same amount of inadequacy as me.
Listen up, brain and heart: you two need to have a come to Jesus. You need to both get it straight that every other billionth heart and brain out there feels lame, inadequate, achy, and broken at times. And you both need to know this down to the depths of your cute little selves, because I need both of you really a lot and it would help if you could work together.
Letting my freak flag fly today means I’m going to share with you the results of a hilariously frustrating photo session I had with Jared recently. It went something like this:
Me: “I need you to take my picture for real. I’m going to wear this and this. You’re going to follow my every whim. We’re going to go to this field and we’re going today.” (Evidence of Bossy Control Freak #1)
alright so I wasn’t actually that mean. I am a good wife people.
Jared: “Okay.” (Because he is nice and he loves me and he is very patient.)
We go to the field. I configure the settings, examine the light, check up on pretty much every frame. The rest of the time is littered with, “Are there sun spots on me?” “What about now?” “No, baby, turn it the other way. Stand on your tip-toes. Okay. I’m going to squat down. YES! That was the perfect light. Stand on this side of me….” and on and on.
Er go evidence of Bossy Control Freaks #2, #3, #4, and #67.
He was such a good sport.
So there are things about this artistry that can be contrived; I can manipulate the angle, the settings, the post-process.
But my favorite shots from the day are where the Bossy Control Freak retires and the Creative Giggly Closet 5 Year Old comes alive–and I believe that’s who I really am.
That’s the real challenge of photography: uncovering the insecurity and all the blockers to reveal your subject with reality and unfaltering truth; that’s what real beauty is.