It seems that there has been a recurring theme in my life lately: “Shouldn’t you at least just try?”
I spent yesterday with a good friend as we talked about all of the exciting endeavors we both are embarking on. And as we continued to talk about her life and her goals, it became clear there was one thing she has always desired to do and had been putting on the back burner as though it was an impossibility. She told me money (or the lack of it) was keeping her from pursing that dream. To which I unashamedly replied, “That’s your excuse. The only thing holding you back is you.” What are good friends for if they can’t punch you between the eyes with a big reality check, right? She shook it off and listened as I reminded her that some windows of opportunities are only open at certain times in our lives. As we continued to talk, her excitement and passion began to overtake the internal dialogue that had been holding her back and a fire was lit inside her heart and mind: “Shouldn’t I at least just try?”
I became aware of a similar situation not that long ago in which a teenage girl I photographed had a dream she wasn’t sure she could pursue. Her dream: modeling. Her naysayers: all the people who tell her, “You are too small, too short, too petite.” In a world that consists largely of mean girls (this is high school we are talking about in a small, rural Southern community), it doesn’t take long for the perceptions of another to dominate the self-identity that you are developing. High school should be a time of dream building but is often a battleground where big dreams go to the grave. But then she saw her photographs. Her heart wouldn’t let her do anything but at least give it a real try.
As I sat down this morning intending to write about something entirely different, I found my way to a blog that I haven’t visited for a while. And her theme: “I have to at least give it a try.”
Things don’t reoccur in life for no reason. So I guess now the important question is: What is in my heart to do that I have diminished in some way? What is that one thing that I should at least just try?
And about that teenage girl’s photos…. Just a few of some of my favorites of her.