Wednesday, November 15, 2006


Sometimes you just have to be honest. Seriously honest. And to be honest, I have to admit that I have jealousy bugs crawling over me all the freaking time. It's not in earnest to be someone else. It's jealousy when others have found HOW to be themselves and make a living out of it. Me? I want to be known for a passion, something great, something so profound. I guess we all do. My problem is I'm passionate about 42 different things.

When friends, like Keith, get to hop on plane and go to China simply to shoot pictures, I turn chartreuse with envy. I feel like I could die. A travelling photography trip to China for fun? You might as well tell me that bell hooks stopped by my office when I was out to lunch. It's the same kind of suicidal disappointment.

It's not just about photography. It's the same kind of envy I feel when someone under thirty publishes a book. I feel the hourglass start shaking; precious sands hurtling downward, marking my inevitable end of life and I have so much still that I want to do. I want to write my life, write my story, write my way into a place I cannot see from here. I want to photograph emotion from strangers, peace from petals, and horror from war. I want to go places and see things, and FEEL, Goddammit! FEEL!

It is not enough for me to "have" a job that is aligned in social justice. I must DO justice; DO meaning; DO great things. I must give something to this world after all it has given me, after all I have taken from it; after all I have ingested.

Yesterday, I went to a lecture from the first women editor of the New York Times editorial section. What did she emphasize beyond politics, journalism, and writing? PASSION. Passion is what drives; PASSION is what does and will make you distinct.

Afterward, I skipped a lecture from Sandra Day O'Connor. I decided to be passionate on my own. Knowing this was a once in a lifetime opportunity and wondering if I would regret it like I did when I skipped a lecture from Coretta Scott King, I still knew what I truly thirsted. It wasn't more advice from another pioneer. I didn't need to hear what I already knew: it's truth, passion, and goodness that propel. What I needed was quiet. I craved one night to myself, time to sculpt myself. I must be distinct.

1 comment:

  1. ay girl, I am RIGHT WITH YOU. I can't tell you how many times i've had to swallow away my anger--my envy--of all these young kids who spend their summers in italy, china, russia, mexico--like it was nothing. like *everybody* spends their summers outside of the u.s. doing good work.

    I'm also feeling your thought on needing a night to yourself--i call that my cave time--some times I need to just be in my cave, you know? (of course you do! :>)


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