So far, I think weary is the best word to sum up 2015 for me. I know that’s not too inspiring or cheer-inducing, but it’s the truth. And I’ve started asking around, checking in with others to see if I’m alone in that. Turns out I’m not. In fact, some of the most powerful people I know have confessed a deep soul weariness in this season. I’m still thinking through what that might mean for us all, but in the meantime I’m still just gonna keep taking pictures and having good conversations :)
This week, I was photographing for the Catalyst Campus here in Colorado Springs, which is an old railroad station turned tech hub that will house lots of fun new companies (after a great amount of demolition and remodeling). The space is amazing and old, and they are planning to keep many of the classic things like the original tile, the ticket counter, and all the exposed brick they’re currently uncovering. Right before this shot happened, Justin my tour guide climbed this very scary ladder to open the latch door to the roof for me. While I continued to frame and snap away down below, I heard him yell a very loud word that I wouldn’t say in front of my mother, and Justin returned to the ground BLEEDING FROM THE HEAD. I mean, dripping blood, people. Good thing it was kinda dark cause I faint like nobody’s business. He left to clean himself and dress his wounds, and there I was. Just the ladder and me. I’m all about doing what scares me, so I hopped up and made the ascent, but I was clinging on for dear life (to ladder and camera)! Luckily, the same fate didn’t befall me, and I was able to get a few shots from above.
And I love this photo, although it’s of little use to Catalyst. So many things came to mind as I looked at it… Lady Gaga’s stunning (and dare I say surprising?) performance of “Climb Every Mountain” on Sunday at the Oscar’s. Selma, the movie about Dr. Martin Luther King’s fight to get equal voting rights for African Americans. I saw that on Thursday night, and I weep like a baby at those kinds of things. People who give their lives for something bigger than themselves, who are willing to sacrifice their very selves for something that will outlast them. The Civil Rights Movement as a whole. Patty Griffin wrote a song called “Up To The Mountain” about the speech MLK gave the day before he was assassinated, and these are some of my favorite lyrics from it:
Some days I look down
Afraid I will fall
And though the sun shines
I see nothing at all
Then I hear your sweet voice, oh
Oh, come and then go, come and then go
Telling me softly
You love me so
And those are the things we cling to as we climb on. As we push through weariness or heartache or rejection or failure. There is more. There is a light to climb towards. May the breakthrough finally break through. Happy Friday, y’all.