If it hurts, if it makes you want to crawl into a ball on your duvet and crumple, then that's good. Because that means that you left a piece of yourself there. You weren't a participant, rather a person who lived and breathed, a real live human being. You existed.
And someday, it will hurt just as much to leave this place, though it doesn't really like that right now.
August shots // canon 6d // laramie WY
We eat Senegalese food with our hands, at the kitchen table in the living room with the new red couch. It’s rice, and onions, and whole fish, bones included, and we pick it apart, trying out a different culture from our living room. Another time, Judith stops by for Thai food with her mom on their way to the Great American West, and there’s a friendliness in the air. I don’t feel so lonely, anymore.
Less than an hour before the first football game of the season, a massive lightning storm rolls into Laramie. Caught underneath a tent at a tailgate that I wasn’t going to stay long at, I shiver and watch the sky flash purple, wondering when the game will start.
Later, at a bar, a guy tells me that “all northerners are rude and mean,” and I get angry, because this isn’t the first time I’ve heard this, I keep hearing this, but isn’t it rude and mean to say that in the first place? I’ve never met a person from New England who had the gall to say something so stereotypical right to someone’s face, and we’re awfully blunt. But instead, I let him twirl me around the dance floor, and then I slip off to watch the game, in awe of the fact that later this season I’ll be standing on that field and photographing it, and how awesome (but nerve-wracking) that will be.
I’m always caught, somewhere, in between being happy and completely and utterly unsatisfied with my work—mainly, the latter. Logically, I remind myself that it’s only been three months, that I’m only 22, that Rome wasn’t built in a day, slow down, take a breath, but emotionally. Emotionally, I’m constantly frustrated at my work, scrolling through other photojournalist’s websites (can I even call myself a photojournalist, yet?) and seeing their progress, where they are. I should have done an internship, should have taken an independent study, I chide myself, even though I really decided that this is what I wanted to do in March, and look how far I’ve come. It’s not enough though. I’m competitive—I want to be the best.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, though.