Tumbleweed

I was tickled pink to be able to restore an old hard drive I had that contained a backup of all of my pictures, music, and writing. Flipping through the images, I’m reminded of the incredible journey the last few years have been for me. Sipping coffee and working through memory lane…

Late night hunger games at Buckeye Donuts. Porching on Norwich Avenue. Man time with the brothers and hamburgers the size of your head. Cross country road trips bid the final goodbye to Ohio. City of Angels…and demons. Lift the weight. See the world. Discount sushi and big dreams of Grammy Awards. Stacks of cash and the freshest seafood of my entire life. Quiet walks down the alleys of Pico Boulevard at 2 in the morning. 

Gratitude has overwhelmed me in the past few weeks. Routine tends to be the hidden enemy that makes us forget just what a gift every moment we have contains.

As I went through the images on the hard drive, I couldn’t help but be reminded about some of the moments they contained. It’s helped me connect the dots over the past few years that would have otherwise slipped away in my memory.

There was a large element of excitement as I packed my car to move to Los Angeles, roughly four years ago. As my mother brought old family photos to breakfast, I remember being in an extra rush to leave; up until that point, I never liked looking at family photos. Only a few months ago, I was sitting in an airport and flipping through a bag of photos given to me by my mother. It was the first moment I enjoyed looking at old photos, and I cried as I looked through them.

Looking back, I’m not sure why I was embarrassed to look at old photos. A lot of it was due to insecurities I had about the clothing/glasses I wore. It wasn’t until this year that I was able to proudly show these photos to friends, with the realization that I am still the inner dork (on the inside!) and that it’s actually a great source of strength, rather than something to be ashamed of.

The nerds who got thrown into trash cans by jocks in high school are now the ones cutting the checks to the jocks. Team ownership has its perks.

What those photos did for me was remind me that I’ve been on a journey for several years. It reminded me why I packed my car and left ‘home’ behind in Ohio to pursue the new and unfamiliar.

The photos reminded me of the moments I had where times were less than optimal. Yet, it is the good memories that remain and not the bad. The smile on my face as I stood on Eagle Rock in Los Angeles was much larger than the memory of being in a stressful period of life.

What I’ve learned is that gratitude and a heart of thankfulness is much more powerful than turbulent situations in life. Soaking in these moments and having a thankful heart is what has given my life the beautiful color it has, in spite of times that would warrant otherwise.

The journey continues. And it is good. So very good.

 

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