So, I feel like this issue keeps coming up, and I want to share my thoughts… This is hard for me, as I am already a huge supporter of the LGBT community, but feel like I haven’t been enough of an advocate. The truth is, I don’t know how hard it actually is to be lesbian, gay, transgendered, black, hispanic, asian, or native American. I am a “straight,” white, middle-class woman living in Denver, Colorado. All I know is life is hard enough just to be priviledged. I complain about things all the time, I’ll admit it, even though I know SO MANY people have it way worse than me. I always say, “This sucks, but at least I don’t have to deal with this, or that…” I could never imagine what it is like to be hated by complete strangers, or even the people you love most (heart-breaking), for just being you.
I hear stories from friends and acquaintances often about these tragic memories and I sympathize. I don’t truly know what it feels like. In all honesty, I don’t want to even try to think of it. I’ve been through plenty of heart-break in my life, and after all those experiences, one thing will always ring true for me… Love should be rewarded with love in return. Why do we protect our children? Bullies, child molestors, murderers, hate, hate, hate. I feel like this is going to be the world’s downfall in the end. Why can’t we just go back to our basics? Share, make friends, date, get married, adopt pets, give birth to children… fall in love.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that I’m not particularly religious, but I am spiritual, and I do feel like I have very strong morals. I believe in God. Not the judgemental God, but the “God is love”(John 4:8 “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”) God. The “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you[Matthew 7:12]” God. I hope this God exists, and that so many people are wrong. No loving God would want us to hate any of his children, period, end of story. I think, in the end, these reasons are why I’m not religious. I don’t want hate to influence my morality. I plan to become a Buddhist, though I already try to practice many of the philosophies.
As an artist, love inspires me. It drives me to be better. I always try to capture the perfect photo in order to make the on-looker feel the love in that moment. The truth is, I specialize in the living because their emotions feed me so much energy. I only see light, and love. That’s all that matters in the end, right? I have photographed so many different monumental moments in people’s lives and yes, I do think it’s that simple…
This reminds me of about 2 1/2 years ago, when I went out to New Jersey to spend my grandfathers last week with him and the rest of my paternal family… I did bring my camera in hospice with me. It’s the most vulnerable I’ve ever felt and I think the hardest shoot I’ve ever had, emotionally, but I knew these were priceless moments of love that me and my family have never truly expressed to one another. We cried, we laughed, we sang, we slept. We were completely raw and exhausted… the photos from that week are so hard to look at, but at the same time, I can’t take my eyes off of them. I see the love. I feel it. It makes me cry all over again. I am SO GLAD I have these photos. They are PRICELESS to me…
So, in the end, why don’t we just love one another? Who cares whether they are LGBT, black, white, asian, hispanic, native American, Jewish, Muslim, liberal, or conservative? We all differ in so many ways, and we should celebrate that! It’s what makes life interesting and fun. I am SO HONORED to be a part of such vulnerable, real, loving moments in so many people’s lives. Every single shoot is different, and awesome. You have shown me your true loving self. The feeling of being your witness is indescribable. Thank you for that. I love you all in return!
Love is love.
Thank you for reading my ramblings,