2015 Has Some Big Shoes to Fill
New Year’s Day is both the beginning and the end of something in each and every one of our lives. A lot of people seem to relish in reflection on this day of the year, and rightfully so. It’s commonplace to keep on thoughts on the positive side of the fence, going through the superfluous nature of the highlights of the year and all the accomplishments that surfaced. This kind of review is a good way to look back through rose colored glasses, but I always tend to examine both sides of the coin with intent to see and feel the good, the bad, the ugly, and the beautiful details to see the whole picture. On the last day of the year, memories and images flash flood through my mind as if a gate that was holding back each and every moment suddenly bursts open into a sea of experiences in front of me. This act feels almost as if I’m trying to pause time and live in each moment, with intentions of capturing that feeling once more before letting the swell make it’s way back from where it came. This practice gives me a better perspective on time and the journey itself, which can be extremely hard to do in our fast paced social lives we’ve created for ourselves. Time is always winning the battle against our desire to slow it down, and too often we ride the wave without even glancing back to see what we’ve just come from and how we got there.
2014 started off with Elissa and I settling back on the East Coast after a 30 day train trip around the US. We spent over 7 days time on a train seeing the great American landscapes roll past the glass windows of our train while we waited to step foot in cities I’ve only heard about. The winter felt extremely long upon our return, which is typically a byproduct of travel. 2014 became my most successful year from a career standpoint. I more than surpassed the goal I set for myself at the beginning of the year and am very proud of where I took myself. I felt that I learned how to create a better balance between my work and personal life, which can be extremely challenging in my field. The rapid pulse of Boston real estate can siphon your free time completely if you let it, which admittedly I have fell victim to more than I like to admit. Society makes it easy to let your career define who you are, but in my opinion self awareness can more often than not be found outside of your 9-5 and is a true reflection of what you are capable of as a human during your time on this planet. Bliss can be found by falling back into the moments that mean the most to me, most of which tend to be simple, fleeting, and easily missed if you are not standing still.
I’m glad that my soul requires me to capture images and moments in time without any other end goal in sight. Photography is an invaluable tool to me and a huge part of my life. Not only can it capture a moment in time, but you can put feelings into the scene in front of you from behind the lens too. If you put thought and your heart into the scene or image you are creating you can make something that has real weight to it, which in turn can provoke thought and emotions from the viewer. Looking back through my catalog of images I can see a story in the making years down the road about who I am today and what I was doing during this period in life. I’m not sure this story will end up anywhere but in the ears of those willing to listen, and that’s just fine by me.
2014 was filled with travel. We had both big and mini adventures exploring our surroundings with the time we had to get away and play. 2014 led us back out to the West Coast to get a glimpse of springtime at Joshua Tree in the Mojave Desert, explore the scenic coastline along the PCH, and help officiate the marriage of one of my best friends to his other half. 2014 made me an uncle and my brother a dad. Holding 7 day old little Evelyn in my arms was something that I cannot describe well enough with words to capture the gravity of the experience. 2014 took me and my partner in crime kayaking and exploring almost all of the Bay Harbor Islands while daydreaming about shacking up in any of the old New England cottages we stumbled upon. We also made time to savor the off season in Martha’s Vineyard, visit Acadia National Park and Peak’s Island in Maine, finally go camping in Upstate NY, and numerous weekend visits to Newport RI to see both new babies and old landscapes. I got to listen to some of my favorite bands play both on the water and the grass at the Newport Folk Festival again. This year also gave me the chance to witness transitions in many of my friends lives that are leading them to brighter futures in their chosen paths. 2014 gave me the pleasure of helping take Elissa and her family to New Orleans for a week of wandering, eating great food, seeking soulful music, and having clean and simple fun. They are truly the most appreciative people I know, so it was a sweet reward to help create memories I know they’ll be cherishing forever. 2014 also came with extremely heavy circumstances that tested the resilience of my heart and soul. I had to say goodbye to my grandfather at the beginning of this year, and had to help my father through a severe stroke shortly thereafter. The power of love is an incredible thing to feel and to witness. During times of crisis and tragedy it can shine brighter than the sun and feel just as warm.
There are too many memories to think about right now as 2014 is witnessing it’s tenure coming to an end. The clock is ticking down to it’s final moments, and I can’t honestly think of anything but the satisfaction of being alive and well. I’m looking forward to see what kind of year 2015 is going to be as I part ways with another year I’ll be hard pressed to forget.
-Written on New Years Eve, 2014 in Dorchester, Massachusetts.