Yes, I’m a photographer. But more than that, I’m a lover and-out-loud liver of life. So was my mother, which is probably where I picked up the propensity. If I were to dump everything I’ve done professionally and otherwise into a heap, it would read something like: photographer, voiceover artist, actor, dancer, figure skater, writer, speaker, horse trainer, trainer/coach for each of the aforementioned, choreographer, innovator, singer, babysitter, employee, business owner, student. To name a few.
(yes, this is me – in one of my favorite roles of the Figure Skating Era. And yes, I do think of the chapters of my life as “eras.” hehheh.)
Back in the day, I used to hear “tsk-tsk’s” followed by the incredibly inane accusation; “Jack of all trades, master of none” of the clearly less-inspired. I used to silently rephrase that in my mind to: “Jack of all trades, master of ALL, thank you very much.” Later in life, I said that out loud. Responses varied. The bottom line was that somehow I knew early on; don’t be afraid to do what you love and do it full-out… and don’t be afraid to change. Because you’re the one you REALLY have to answer to and in the end, you only take the person you’ve become with you.
I was driven by this vision of me on my deathbed, looking back at my life. Did I want it to look like a field of broken dreams, torn asunder by fear? (Yes, I know that’s a stereotypical phrase… which poetically ties into how I didn’t EVER want see my life; a stereotype!) Or did I want to be thrilled by all the opportunities and experiences I’d allowed myself to have, enriched in my spirit and soul by all that I’d learned along the way and been able to share with others? The way my heart leapt with joy at the second vision was all I needed to know.
I set out to do it all. And excel at everything, to the best of my ability. I threw myself into skating, riding, dancing, etc. when I was young – because I knew that it was my one chance to really DO it the way I envisioned. There were other, less physically demanding things I also wanted to do – but knew they’d still be there when I was a bit older and not so excited about being on the ice at 5am 6 days a week. I was right. And I learned lessons on the ice and with horses that are part of a rock-solid foundation in my life today.
I knew it meant changes. Alot of them. But I embraced that as part of the life I was choosing. I made alot of choices; all of which I learned from and all of which brought forward into the next chapter. Somehow as a child I knew we wrote the book of our own life. I understood that our life is the art we are living. We may DO things along the way to make money, entertain ourselves, learn something, express more… but our life as an art form and living expression of Creation was the bottom line.
I love photography, as those who know me from Google+, Facebook and this blog know, but it’s not all for the reasons you may think. Photography for me is a deep expression, yes… but it’s also a portal to What’s Next, much like skating, riding, dance and all the rest were in their time. In my next chapter, there will be changes, opportunities, experiences, enlightenments, mistakes (which are really just great lessons), delightful surprises and a new light on everything. That’s my vision for the changes I’m embracing now. And may I just say, I’m so happy that you’re a part of it! 😀
My parting shot: a selfie, shot in 1975 (or thereabouts). We called them “self portraits” back then, and this was an assignment from photography class; take a photo of yourself, in your own environment, expressing some inner part of yourself. We lived on a ranch, so I chose the tack compartment of our horse trailer. Camera set up on a feed bucket. Hay hooks; well, I was feisty. I loved and embraced my Inner Feisty. She was my protector back then. She’s still around, funnier and lighter now, wiser, more discerning – and definitely has better accessories. But she’s still so awesome… and together, we’re still embracing change… and sharing the journey.