As you know, I think about emotions. Constantly. And the feeling that keeps coming up among my peers is sadness. I'm not sure why - maybe it's that we're settling into an understanding that we're adults. That this is what our lives are. And that maybe those dreams aren't coming true, or at least not in the way that we thought. But even facing that possibility, we search.
Christa and I have been friends since college. But when I started doing some pretty heavy work up in Northern Washington we had a chance to reconnect as friends and adults. I'm not going to share a lot of her story, that's for her to tell, but I will tell you that she's experiencing some sadness right now. And what we talked about is that sadness is okay.
Actually, sadness is more than just okay. Sadness is important, it's a marker of a life lived without fear. It means that we have something to be sad about, people to grieve, choices that were made fully. I'm still getting comfortable with that idea, but I really appreciate this chance to show Christa how her sadness isn't a marker of failure, but in fact, it can be a point of pride. It means she cares.
Christa goes to this beach to look for agates and sea glass. She does this after work, during breaks from work and on some weekends. This is her beach. It's not large, it's rocky and it's surrounded by industrial parks. It's perfect. When I took the picture above, she had her hand open to show me the glass. But I asked her "are you nervous that the glass is going to fall out of your hand?" she said "so nervous." So she held it tight, not even worrying about showing it to anyone.
I can't say for sure that this photo series helps anyone feel better, I'm not even sure if that's the point. I think the point is to show people that however they're feeling, that's perfect. I've spent a lot of time trying to fix people or at least facilitate people's healing. I'm now feeling like, who are we to judge those emotions? Why can't people be sad, and still be amazing. You're amazing.