join the unfiltered family.

Around here, we don’t drink the kool-aid.

We only drink TRUTH JUICE, freshly squeezed, straight to your inbox.

This is flow.

I don’t know what to do with my face, I’m not a model. I’m not being directed like I’ve seen on location at other shoots or on TV or in the movies, I’m usually on the directing/planning side. In fact, I am a lion AND a tiger with a decent Blue Steel and I’ve been asked to demonstrate exactly zero of those faces. No direction, just shutter sounds. Well, I was told that I needed to learn how to take direction and here I am, in desperate need of direction to follow, directionless. What now? Nobody brings trekking poles to Sunset Cliffs. No real hiker would call this hiking. I’m going to get ridiculed for this. I’m a literal poser right now. OMG, they’re right. Everyone who has ever told me I’m a fake and a phony is totally right and this photoshoot is capturing my phoniness.

🔮 UH OH here we go. Insights incoming. 🔮

OMFG, THESE THOUGHTS AREN’T MINE.
As I observe these thoughts, much like I dumped out the invisible backpack full of my trauma on the #transcatalinatrail, I’m sorting. Ohhhh, this is like my #traumapack, mostly full other people’s stuff. This old path I was pursuing, these expectations I was trying to meet, the pressure I was feeling? Overwhelmingly not mine. Now, I know the origins of the lies I’ve held as my truth. Now, I’ve met the makers of all the things I believe to be bad and wrong about myself. Now, I own my assumptions that led to some of these beliefs.

Waaaaaaait a minute. This shoot is perfect! This directionless moment is PERFECT. I asked for it. I said I wanted to be here. I’m not holding the photographer hostage so he wants to be here too. My husband isn’t a prisoner, he chooses this life with me every day.

Could this be…. freedom? Is this what it feels like to be pursuing the path of MY dreams? Is this what it feels like to say yes to MYSELF first instead of prioritizing everyone else?

This isn’t a lack of direction.
This is flow.

If you don’t know flow, it can look and feel like drowning.

This is is the hardest work I’ve done. Personal exploration doesn’t pay the bills but I am currently the richest I’ve ever been.

I’m not a model.
I’m not perfect.
I’m Sydney.
Nice to meet you.

📸@thomasvanveen

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