Monday, February 23, 2015

Finding Myself Again

by Terri

When the world just seems to be too big and the whole thing seems to be resting squarely on your shoulders, it can be hard to find beauty in anything. It doesn’t matter that the weather is beautiful, the flowers are blooming or the birds are singing, you have fallen into a deep, dark hole and are finding it hard to dig your way out.  I have always been a very “glass is half full” kind of girl and have never experienced depression, if that’s even what this is. So figuring out what to do about it has not been easy. Have you been there? 

This is where I have been since the holidays. Usually there is a bit of “post-holiday blues” after the family goes home and all that wonderful togetherness has come to an end. But it never lasts for long, until this year. I keep thinking I can figure out a way to shake it but so far, and we’re approaching the end of February, it hasn’t happened.  Two months of not picking up my camera.  Even though I know that might be just the medicine I need, I am finding it hard to get motivated to do it. And, as I am sure you’ve experienced at one time or another, the longer you go without picking up your camera, the less likely you are to do it. 

So I decided last week that I wasn’t going to wait to be inspired or motivated or any of the things that it would take for me to pick up my camera and head out the door. I had a free day and decided that I was going to make a date with my camera and just go. Even though our temperatures have been hovering around 75-80 and it feels like spring, there isn’t much blooming and growing yet. But I knew where I would find lots and lots of flowers and so I headed to my local nursery.  Inexpensive, close and sure to provide lots of beautiful photographic subjects. 

Lately when I need a photo for a class or a post, I have been going into my archives because, since I haven’t been shooting, there was nothing new to choose from. But every photo in this post is from my day at the nursery. I even spent some time playing with apps on my phone shots, something I love and haven’t done in months, but I guess you have to be taking some photos first, huh?

Although I know there is no magic cure for what ails me, just getting out and playing for a few hours has lifted my spirits. And now that I have picked up my camera again, I am going to try to make it a regular thing the way it used to be before the “funk” set in. Keep focusing on the beauty in this world, which can't help but make things brighter. 

As you can see, because the world was feeling too big, I chose to focus on the little things and that is always where I find the most inspiration. Can you tell I like pink?  It just makes me happy, which, I guess, is the whole point!



Lisa Comperry said...

It is definitely in the little things that make us feel more grounded and sane..Such as a day away if one is caring for a sick parent..Or a small break if one has a heavy work load on a given day...Have you looked into seasonal affective disorder? This affects me big time :/

Peggy said...

What a brave post. Where I live the witer seems endless and cabin fever sets in. For a long time I suffered with Seasonal Affective Disorder and had a difficult time making it through February. It's easy to be depressed and bored when you can't get out much. You have the right idea....activity and a change of pace is good for what ails you. It's hard to be creative when you are feeling down. But just the act of moving forward helps. And your camera led you to take gorgeous flower pictures and they not only cheered you up but me as well.

AFishGirl said...

This is a brave post, Terri. You are certainly not alone. I'm glad you went out with the camera. I believe it is the best medicine. It helps us "see." And it's a form of play. We all need play. Especially in hard times, when it seems we're least inclined to play. Yes, that's when we need it most. I'm a big fan of Pema Chodron. Her books were a huge help to me and changed the way I look at life. Take good, good care of yourself. Pam oxoxoxox

Kim Stevens said...

It happens to all of's happened to me more times than I can count in the last two years. I have had to fight to stay engaged when all I've wanted to do is crawl into the fetal position in my bed and never come out. I really like this quote ..."We should be taught not to wait for inspiration to start a thing. Action always generates inspiration. Inspiration seldom generates action." - Frank Tibolt

And isn't it so true...we are always thinking that it's the inspiration that drives our actions when really it's the other way around. Sometimes we have to push ourselves to do something we may not want or feel like doing, but we always benefit. I'm so glad you went out with your camera and that it lifted your spirits Terri!!! {insert puffy heart} xo I hope you go out again soon...I'm so sorry your feeling down.

kelly said...

i can totally relate terri. when the world feels big and heavy, all I want to do is retreat. so happy to hear how delighting in the little things has lifted your spirits. thank you for so bravely sharing and being so honest. xoxo

Dotti said...

Whatever name we give it -- funk, blues, blahs, doldrums -- or the more serious 'depression' -- it hurts. And it seems to perpetuate itself. I think the quote Kim shared is spot on. I'm most inclined to feel this way if I have, or think that I have, too much on my plate. It used to happen when I was working and it still happens now. The feeling of, 'Why do I have to do everything?' 'Why can't someone else help?' 'I can't take on one more thing!' As women, we tend to take on not only our own load but the loads of all those about us. And in the process, we forget about self care. Let's face it! For all of us here at FOL, time with our cameras IS self care!

Dotti said...

Oh! And I'm sending you a big cyber hug! xo

Deanna said...

Oh I do know this feeling oh so well. I was in your exact position this time last year and I can't really tell you what eventually brought me out of my "slump" but somehow with the grace of God, the people around me and my love of photography I managed to crawl out of my hole. But I truly believe that being in these down times helps you to appreciate so much more when the good times return. You learn more in the valley's of your life than on the top of the mountains. I will see you this week so, unlike Dotti giving you a big cyber hug, I can do it in person!!!

Roxi Hardegree said...

what Dotti said and Kim said and others in between.... I'm glad Deanna will get to visit. That will help immensely. I ADORE that last edit. Hugs to you.

Barb Brookbank said...

Sorry to hear you've been feeling this way, Terri. I applaud you for picking up the camera and just going out ... that's not easy to do but it really can help. I tend to "shut down" when I have too much on my plate.

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