I’m still here.

Hi there. I’m still here–are you still here, too? Are we all okay? As okay as we can be, that is?

I’ve had so many feelings about this shitstorm of a year. And, mostly, I’ve felt not unable to write, but more of a sense of impropriety about writing. The horrors of living through a global pandemic are not even the issue at this point. It’s the maelstrom of what the virus has exposed. A world I don’t know or understand. People I no longer know how to connect with. Maybe I never understood, but I felt like I had more of a grip on things.

Being introspective about it here, on a public (although minimally-followed) blog feels indulgent, and just plain wrong. But, I started this blog and it’s been a way to remember events in my life, so… I don’t know. I’m navigating some things, like aging and menopause and working and creativity and family. These things continue, regardless. I miss writing my way through life’s complicated bits, selfish as it may be.

I do feel lucky, though. To not have gotten sick so far, that my family has not gotten sick so far, that mostly the people I love and care about are weathering this. I try not to get bogged down in what’s next and focus on this: I’m still here. I’m doing my best to stay here. I want to see this play out. I want to fly to Austin and visit my daughter and her two new kittens. I want to sit and have a beer with my son and talk about his life. I want to be so in love with the world again that I sing, alone in my car, loud enough and for long enough to make my voice hoarse. I want to see mountains and rocks jutting up from the ocean floor in places I’ve never been to. I want to skinny dip and lay in warm sand and get muddy in the woods. I want to have weird conversations with strangers.

So goodbye, 2020. You were awful, to say the least. I’ll admit you had a handful of bright spots, and I didn’t lose my ability to laugh or be caustic. You taught me a couple of lessons, too, about how much I really don’t (and conversely, do) need and how much better I want to be about nurturing relationships–including the relationship with myself.

I didn’t take very many photos this year, but here are my very favorites of the maybe 10 rolls of film that I shot. I really only shot with my two Minolta cameras this year and the two medium format Mamiya’s that were gifted to me by a friend’s dad, although my favorites here are from my go-to, the Minolta SRT-102. Next year I’ll have to put the other cameras in my stash to work. Maybe a project of one camera per month might get me moving in the right direction again..

March 2020, Minolta SRT-102 and I think expired Kodak T-Max
June 2020, Minolta SRT-102, Lomochrome Purple
August 2020, Minolta SRT-102, Kodak Portra 160 (found doll head on beach–I did find, and photograph, two legs and one arm; these parts were all within a quarter mile of each other)
August 2020, Minolta SRT-102, Kodak Ektachrome
October 2020, Minolta SRT-102, Lomochrome Purple

6 thoughts on “I’m still here.”

  1. I love the June 2020 pic of the intertwined trees. The roots make me think of people holding hands. I may need to buy that for my yoga room.

    On another note, being creative in the face of all we’ve been through this past year isn’t indulgent. Some would call it brave. Others would call it a form of resistance. I say it is a gift you give to us and I am grateful.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Deb, you really are wise and I will need to remind myself of your words. Expression is worthy, and necessary. I need to give myself that permission.

      And I love this tree image, too. I loved seeing these trees in that light on an evening hike in early summer, and I loved the subtle purple imbued by the film I used. It does look to me like hands (the roots) and arms (the trunks) intertwined. It felt like a gift at the moment. Happy to have a print made for you.

      Like

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