The Blog

Deja vü. It’s something we can laugh about, but when it really and truly happens, it can knock you sideways. I wanted to write something new about this place I keep finding myself in, but nothing original is forming. So I’m reposting something (with minor edits/updates) from more than two years ago. Deja vü. It’s like a hat I can’t take off.

(originally posted June 2008)

“You know quite well, deep within you, that there is only a single magic, a single power, a single salvation…and that is called loving. Well, then, love your suffering. Do not resist it, do not flee from it. It is your aversion that hurts, nothing else.” — Herman Hesse

Love your suffering. I’ve heard this over and over during the past few years. In yoga class. At meditation retreats. At a crazy Friday night kirtan where I sat next to a woman draped in mala beads who sobbed noisily throughout and intermittently cried out “I embrace you, misery!” while waving her hands in the air. I’ve read it in endless books on healing; buddhist, hindu, western. I’ve heard it at seminars, at Kripalu, in therapy. I’ve written the words and stared at them for countless hours. Love. Your. Suffering.

How do I do that?


Do I even want to?

Happiness was here for a while. I stopped reveling in nihilism. I let go of anger. I am no longer dependent for the life of my life on another human being. I walked away quietly into the empty spaces and found, if not enlightenment, then at least balance. I’m headlong into the theory of buddhist peace — I can touch it NOW. Be present in it now. I don’t need to do something now to get somewhere later. I’m here. I want to look in the mirror and recognize the person who looks back.

However, suffering is still there. I know it is. I’m human. I’m hip to the impermanence of almost any emotion, any experience. Happiness is a promise with a catch, right? Never forget from whence you came? I know that I am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions. I know that my emotions are my responsibility; contrivances with which I am actively complicit. I know that under the surface, there’s still a need to deal. I just liked being happy SO much.


So came the flood. I was in urdhva uhanurasana, or backbend pose, this morning. I was rushing through my practice so I could get my day started; a mistake right there. I had left iTunes on and was listening to a playlist I had forgotten about. This song came on. I was completely unprepared for my reaction; shaking wrists, trembling legs. My energy, my chi, just went away, and I collapsed on the floor, tears streaming. It doesn’t take a genius to see the metaphor. I can stand alone, but I don’t want to.

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That’s short for Charlotte. Short for Ridiculously Cute. I got to hang out with Charlie and her mom Laurie for a bit and learn a little bit about what it’s like to be three weeks old.

Most of the time it’s pretty cool. Especially when you come in handy as a room accessory:

Sometimes not so much:

Charlie has the strongest neck of any newborn I have ever seen. She’s Super-Baby!

Naps are good.

Tune in again in January when Charlie turns three months old!

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Really. More fur than anything, ever.

If you saw me driving around today with the windows open, swatting at stuff flying around my head, choking, it’s okay.

Jed has come to visit.

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Remember Ava and Jack? I met up with them again recently, and, just as I suspected, they’ve gotten even cooler.

The light was perfect for playing in the leaves with mom and dad.

Dad Jay and mom Erica were awesome about sitting back and letting the kids do their thing:

Ava and her daddy:

Thank you, family, for another super-fun shoot!

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I’ve been looking for signs lately. Not bleeding Madonna-type signs (which, eww); more like optimistic fortunes in my cookies, happily chirping bluebirds on my windowsill in the morning, massive financial inheritances from ancient aunts I never knew exited. I tend to award great significance to the slightest coincidence. If I’m reading a book or magazine and there’s a mention of my hometown or my college, I will always ponder what it means. Which is usually nothing. Sometimes there’s a song on the radio with lyrics that were OBVIOUSLY written totally about me and my life. That’s a sign, right? The other day I was going nuts looking for my keys, pulling open drawers where they absolutely would not be, and I found a card someone had written to me earlier this year. A sign? Was I supposed to call this person? Was this person thinking about me? Why did I open this drawer in the first place? It must have been destiny!!! I’ve been thinking about someone lately, and, again, seemingly by coincidence, I’ve driven by that person no fewer than FOUR times this week. WHAT DOES IT MEAN??? Crap, probably. I’m manufacturing my own lens of reality. Engaging in an exercise of existential torture.

No kidding.

I did manage to come across something this morning that has not yet unveiled its long-term significance, but has definitely made me bounce around the office a little bit. And these days, that’s a good sign. Turn it up.

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I can’t think of a single thing to say that would do justice to the joy that these two children bring me. I’ve known them since they were babies, and I count their parents among my most caring friends. Liv and Andrew are beauty and light and happiness and I’m just going to let these photos speak for themselves.

okay, one last one just because it’s so darn cute. I think Calder was about 16 months in this one, so Livvie was just under two. Seems like yesterday.

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Remember the Rocks? Normally I’d link you to their blog post from last year, but due to the great blog crash of January 2010, I don’t have the post any more. I do, however, have this photographic reminder of how rad that first shoot was.

A little more than a year later and the radaliciousness continues. Noah and Eli are total stars.

Mitch and Laura are the kind of parents who really know how to have fun with their kids. Everyone was laughing and loading up on candy.

I couldn’t resist this tree:

There were about a bazillion photographers out yesterday, so getting a clear shot was tough, but I kind of like the chaos of this one.

I love the light in this one:

Candy rocks.

Thanks, Rock Family, for another super fun shoot. Can’t wait to do it again next year!

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How I would have loved to photograph Rilke. To spend one moment or ten or an eternity delving into brilliance.

“Do not assume that she who seeks to comfort you now, lives untroubled among the simple and quiet words that sometimes do you good. Her life may also have much sadness and difficulty, that remains far beyond yours. Were it otherwise, she would never have been able to find these words.”

“Surely all art is the result of one’s having been in danger, of having gone through an experience all the way to the end, where no one can go any further.”

“A person isn’t who they are during the last conversation you had with them – they’re who they’ve been throughout your whole relationship.”

Let life happen to you. Believe me: life is in the right, always.”

And, most amazingly:
“…have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked in rooms or books written in a very foreign language. Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps then, someday far in the future, you will gradually, without even noticing it, live your way into the answer…”

I’m trying.

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I’ve been going to Melissa for cut and color for like a billion years. She’s become such a good friend, and I felt like I knew her family even before I met them, finally, this past weekend. Husband Richie is GULP quite handsome, and kids Hallie and Sam were firecrackers from the minute we met. Richie’s parents and sister were here from Arizona, so we made it a big family affair.

Hallie and Sam with their auntie, nana, and poppa.

The light was amazing along the trails:

Hallie is so gorgeous:

And Sam is definitely on his way to being Absolutely Famous.

The kids ran around at the beach for a bit in the last of the afternoon light. I love that you can see the Boston skyline in the background.

Rawr. Big time.

Richie and his sister hiked up this giant hill and I caught them on their run back down:

A few final moments in the light:

Melissa, you and your entire crew are tremendous. Thanks for such an amazing afternoon, and for keeping my roots at bay 😉

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