“Look at this, Georgia.” She said, showing me the photo she had just taken. We had spent the afternoon moving through the rooms in her house, carefully examining and trying to represent the words clarity and confusion. Both of us getting excited at the newest photo we took. Interesting that we each had a difficult time seeing our own images, but instantly saw the raw, true beauty in the photos we took of each other. I was curled up in her bathtub, leaning against the wall and strategically covering as much of my body as I could. “Look, do you see this? Do you see you?” For the millionth time I found myself on the verge of tears. It was hard to look at. It isn’t easy to confront yourself in such a way, to strip down, not only figuratively but literally… but that’s why we were doing it in the first place.
Can I just tell you, it is exhausting, being ok. Being ok takes a lot of energy. People expect you to be ok more often than not, and they don’t know what to do when you’re lost in the trenches. It takes effort to maintain the appearance of ok. Taking down the bricks and exposing my heart during our session felt immense. Allowing my wounds to be seen and witnessed… It was both what I needed and what I feared. What I know is that walking through the darkness is bringing me some of the clarity I so need, but to get there I have to sit in the shadows and rest for awhile.
The last few months have been a mixed bag of emotion for me. While I am profoundly grateful to have experienced some life changing events, there are moments where I feel broken by some of the after effects. On the hard days it feels like confusion takes over, throwing me completely off balance. The thing is, I don’t know how it happened. One day everything was good. Then there was a shifting of tides and the sand was washing away under my feet and the water was pulling me, dragging me out to sea… and now sometimes it seems like keeping my head above water is the best I can do. This isn’t every moment of every day of course, it isn’t even every day. But the confusion and sadness and disillusionment make their appearances often enough.
All I know is that I can’t see the end of the path from here. I’m on a road that twists and turns, and right now the sun is low and it’s hard to see through the trees and I can’t see around the bend up ahead. I also know that the sun will set on this day, or this week, or this month, and when it does I will wake up and watch the sunrise.
I’m meeting myself at the intersection between being ok, and not, and I’m wading through the confusion to where the light will illuminate the truth.
To learn more about The Holy Contradiction project, please read our posts here and here.
Each shot in this post was a collaboration, images of me were taken by Jessamyn, while images of her were taken by me and I did the edits you see here. To see Jessamyn’s interpretation of our session please visit her here.