Found Not Lost...
Updated: Jun 29
Seven years ago, I started putting words to some of the pictures which stood out to me, from some of the adventures which have helped to maintain my spirit through the good times and the difficult times. Over the course of these seven years, there has been a feeling of satisfaction which I've received by pressing onward, though many a times being idle seemed the easier choice.
I'm not a "writer", the words come to me quickly but leave the tips of my fingers slower than one would imagine, simply due to the fact that I'm more insecure than I am confident about the content being laid out visually (words and photography).
Some years ago a friend of mine quipped, after I had posted something on Instagram, I'm sure, "You take one picture, fall asleep, and then write this feel good stuff, it's fake". The statement bothered me then, however I've used it as motivation to be "awake" more than just having my eyes open.
The beauty with photography and with words is that interpretation is left up to the viewer, the reader, unless otherwise stated that pictured below is a building, a sunset, a helicopter, a city, a writer staring back at an audience wondering, "What are you making of all of this..."
Today, my younger brother sent me a text message which reminded me to thank the good Lord for my talents and treasures, he proceeded to tell me that he hoped something would enter and take over me though he knew it already existed but he hoped that it would be awakened within me (oooh the spiritual electricity).
It's always interesting to get that bit of "revival" via text and I'm either perplexed or charged by not so much the message but by the mere feeling that someone is thinking of me enough to send encouragement whatever it might look like.
My response to my brother was a fairly simple one, "You know I've been writing for over four years and you've yet to ever ask me what I've seen or what I'm thinking when I write; I even published a little book and there was never a word about it from you as well. I'm being used for certain and the process has been lonely many a times". His retort was brief, "I'm talking about REALLY being used".
Alas, someone grading my level of usage.
For seven years I've sat down with my trusty MacBook and cranked out piece after piece, over three hundred entries now. During this time, I've fought through a few hardships financially, spiritually, and emotionally; through it all, I've been used in ways and at times I was not expecting to be used.
Two years ago, I was at my breaking point, thinking that I didn't need to be here on this earth. For a few weeks, perhaps a couple of months I fought through the darkness, I fought through the trick that our minds sometimes tells us that being gone is a better option than being here.
Over the course of the last seven years, I've spoken with hundreds of high school students encouraging them that life is all about one foot in front of the other and the sky is merely a landing pad for them as there's no limitation to how far they can go; nonetheless, here I stood stuck within a rut of uncertainty which I'd created for myself.
You know what being used looks like, like REALLY being used as my brother so eloquently placed it? It's random high school students reaching out in the middle of the night via an Instagram direct message and asking how to simply hang on in life, it's an adult who was once a kid within a group who says to you that you helped to shape their decisions, it's buddy who tells you that their passport was stamped because of the way you spoke about travel and the world, it's not giving into jumping off of a fucking bridge and snuffing out the very gifts which I was given so long ago.
It is true that most people don't know what another person is going through, typically because they do not take the time to ask or maybe because they just don't care and texting is a band aid to intentionality of this thing we call life. "I love you but I know nothing about you".
Seven years ago, my first piece was titled Lost and Found and now almost a week shy of that seven year mark, I'm telling you that I've found my steps, I'm telling you that life isn't always a bed of roses. The truth is being comfortable is exactly that, comfortable, and within said comfort we can lose ourselves, allowing too much of what we don't like, need, or want to become commonplace within our lives. The question is for how long do we play the "game" before we wake up and take hold of the gifts given to us.
I'm not writing for myself or shooting photography for myself necessarily, because if I were, there would be fewer photos, fewer posts. My super power is my ability to leave the same way I entered a room, quietly; it's just while I'm in said room I pray that the gifts which I've been blessed with, come to light if needed and people are left remembering that they're not alone.
The picture above is of a city, it's of a sunset, some buildings, a helicopter, and some trees, there are so many stories within the image, however, you've only read just one.
Stay with me, there are more to be shared, there's a special gift within that...
"I'm out here, come find me". - Mr Incognito