I'm making it a practice to re-post this frequently. And it's been a while. Its the most important contract I've ever written for myself. And a promise I intend to keep. We cannot be all things to all people, there are times when we for sanity's sake have to pull back and self care. Sometimes we do have to draw the line, or ask for a time out. Why people react so strongly when we do is beyond me. I suspect ego has much to do with it, and a need to control the outcome. When we set a boundary, we remove that control as well as the outcome.
"When we set a boundary, we let go of the outcome."
The purpose of setting boundaries is to take care of our self. Being forced to learn how to set boundaries is a vital part of learning to own our self, of learning to respect ourselves, of learning to love ourselves. If we never have to set a boundary, then we will never get in touch with who we really are. ~Robert Burney
I will not apologize for setting my own personal boundaries. I will not apologize for doing whatever it takes to enforce those boundaries. I will not apologize for doing whatever it takes to protect my emotonal well being. I will not apologize for keeping out those who are not healthy. I will not apologize for taking time to think before I speak. I will not apologize for telling someone their behavior is not acceptable to me. I will not apologize for deciding what behavior is and is not acceptable. I will not apologize for stepping back from a situation in order to evaluate my feelings, however long that takes. I will not apologize for setting strict boundaries when I need and sticking to them. I will not apologize for asking for space when I need it. I will not apologize for taking responsibility for the way I allow others to treat me. I will not apologize for cutting someone completely out of my life if I feel they don't respect my boundaries. I will not apologize for not believing everything I'm told. I will not apologize for letting your problems, your dysfunction be yours. I will not apologize for not being able to be all things to all people. I will not apologize for loving myself enough to set boundaries even if it means I risk losing people in my life because of them.
I've spent the summer chasing the light. Racing the light some days.
Fishing every chance I get, photographing every thing I see.
Making the most of days that bring with them green grass, bright blue skies and big billowy clouds.
[Until it gets too hot, my days are then spent grateful for central air.]
Sooner than I realize the season changes, I love the fall. The crisp wet air. And the smell. The smell of rotting leaves that have fallen from the trees, makes me feel more alive than the warmth of a summer sun.
I know that winter is coming, and for the first time I feel like summer has lasted to long. I feel this every year. I'm no longer fighting for every hour of daylight.
I relish the thought of coming home, to warm glowing lights by candle or by lamp. I find my way once again to the kitchen, and books that have been left to wait on the shelf, will be read. The days getting shorter... excites my innate need to hibernate, to slow down and settle in. It renews me in a way I cannot describe.
It is on this night I wish you were here to celebrate with me the coming of quieter months.
"The mind is a superb instrument if used rightly. Used wrongly, however, it becomes very destructive. To put it more accurately, it is not so much that you use your mind wrongly— you usually don't use it at all. It uses you."
My sweet Hannah, walked three miles and did a bit of mindless wandering with me. This is a huge deal.
We walked for over two hours, more than three miles, when all was said and done.
She let me lead her thru the woods, down trails she'd never seen.
We got temporarily misplaced a couple of times and had to reroute. A few whimperings prompted the occasional reassurances. I love that she never lets go of my hand. She is my favorite hand to hold.
Save for one other.
Hannah: Drumming? Me: Drumline (Hannah smiles because I know what she means) Hannah: Boom? Boom? Me: Boom Boom Boom. (Hannah smiles because she likes me to say it in threes)
I take Hannah's hand which is holding mine, and make the three beats so she can feel my words. I ramble on about music and rhythm.
A few minutes later she prompts me to do it again.
Repeat this 50 times. With me once n a while doing a 1 2 3. And waltzing in the woods to make her laugh. She did.
If I lay on the ground to photograph something, she'll sit down behind me. : ) I photograph all of it. So we both remember.
This morning She gets up and goes to the bathroom on her own. No prompting by me. yay. seriously.
Then comes to the kitchen for juice. Hannah: dio. Me: radio, you want the radio?
I go get it thinking she wants music in the kitchen. We listen to music a lot. Lately I have it playing in the bathroom while she takes a bath.
She takes me by the hand and brings me to her room. She wants the music in her room. Martin Sexton. (she has great taste) If you've ever heard his music, you might understand why she gravitates to it. I like to say he's autistically pleasing. (as in.. especially pleasing to her autistic ear) If that makes sense.
I plug in the ipod, she wraps herself in her favorite blanket and tells me Bye.
How 16 of her. I'm smiling.
She comes out a few songs later. She claps her hands and says push ding. Which means push swing. And says walk too. She remembers. She knows she did something good. She's proud of herself. She should be.
I clap too and say You did good Hannah. She turns around and goes back to listen to Martin.
Photography for me, has always been about telling the story,
one I do without words. In any story there is a beginning a middle
and an end. There are those rare moments when you get all three
in one shot. And you know it when you shoot it.
You just do, you can feel it.
Then there are stories that demand more.
Pieces of the whole. It's a phrase I use often.
It's the only way I know how to define my work.
They say we are more than the sum of our parts,
philosophical speaking I suppose that's true.
But...when it comes to telling a story,
it has everything to do with the parts.
It doesn't matter if it's a wedding, or a lake shot, or a food image.
It's still all about the details, and the details are in the details.
All I want to do is tell the story.
say everything I cannot.
They not only tell the subjects story,
they also tell my own.
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