I’ve been seeing this picture every time I turn on my laptop since it’s been my desktop background for many months.
It’s a gem, isn’t it?
However, it’s more than just one of my favorite images from a pool photo shoot last year with my friend, Bryan Allo (he’s awesome, by the way).
Several months ago, when I first made this my desktop background, I found peace and power in its resignation. A sort of calm strength as I resigned myself to sinking deeper into my life as a poor, disabled person without much agency over my future. I saw it as a letting go – an acceptance of my hard life and a determination to maintain grace despite sinking.
I knew I would keep dreaming, doing, being. But I also knew there would be no housing stability. No living wage. No permanence in my independence. I knew my future was only as strong as my frugality to maintain a facade of stability for as long as my dollars lasted over and above the meager Social Security Disability income that didn’t match my survival budget.
I was holding my breath here. Holding my breath so I could maintain a pose for the outside world to see my hold-it-togetherness, something I’ve gotten quite good at while being impoverished.
I created a bubble in this chasm of water, for the camera. A mimicking of my life: showing people a calm, serene, “I’m fine!” moment.
Isn’t that really all that modeling is, after all? A mimicking of life, a pretend aura? A flicker of truth shielded by a perfected faux-reality?
But I realize now I was holding my breath not for the time it would take to hit the bottom, but for the bursting of my lungs when I exploded in disbelief and joy at the dawn of the new year, 2019.
January 24th. The day I learned I would be buying a house. After years of being told I couldn’t, I suddenly was. (Read about that in my last post)
Now I look at this picture and I see an egg waiting to hatch. I see perfection held together, offering a glimpse of incubation. I see strength and light, and I see a body slowly expanding, growing into itself and outward into the light. I see a holding together and a breaking forth. And surety and fearlessness.
I see me.
A [soon-to-be] new homeowner (pending keys) who everyone doubted. I see exactly how I feel: confident, a little bit “I told you so, just watch me now,” ready to leap and also waiting to sit in my throne.
I see a commanding metamorphosis in process, perpetually.
I see what happens when there’s a reason to hope.
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