Why I Document So Much of My Life

A recap of the past 10 years. Hello 2020!

It’s like I drown from a wave of nostalgia, like sucking on driftwood baked in river’s blood. The feeling I ruminate in is… ethereal. Magical. Unlike any other form of recollection that I can dream of.

I document much of my life in ways I know is too much. Postcard snippets, journal entries, thousands of photographs, videos, napkin drawings, handwritten letters, and millions of memory banks. Some are gains, some are loses, many are the mini snapshots of ordinary happenings. There is a sort of high I breathe when writing a critical note or photographing something intimate, like a deep sigh of crisp forest air, a form of euphoric disorientation. I feel comfort at my attempt of appropriate representation.

There is the obvious question of whether or not such forms of documentation disrupt the present moment. Does the act of over-romanticizing the existing reality distort what is real? Does capturing a moment inherently make it inauthentic?

Well — I don’t think so, at all. And I damn those who believe otherwise.

Documentation can be used for productivity, self-accountability, or nostalgic reverence. It shouldn’t be an excuse to wallow in the past, but rather a form of communication with your future. To me, I find it as a timestamp of the present, an alternative way of meditation.

I do what I do to project a meaningful existence. Some may call that a catalyst for contemporary swelling, but I do what I can to find that piece of good. Of course, there are messy contradictions and growing pains between untouched nirvana and some form of emotional puberty, but never forget that we are outsiders just playing the game. We all don’t know what the hell we’re doing. But isn’t it part of the fun? Isn’t that what life is about — the growth and love and never-ending circles of learning?

On a boat somwhere in Mexico.

Certain places hold their history close. My heart is one of those places. And I feel comfort in knowing that all my sweet, soulful memories will be impossible to forget.

Photograph the ones you love, even if the lighting or composition is off. Do it anyway. Write a sentence a day in a bullet journal or scribe a nearby strangers’ conversations at the coffee shop. It doesn’t have to be grand to be beautiful; nothing important ever is. Discover those buried gems that feel unceasingly in conversation with its past, humming with cozy charm and vigorous character that adds a layer of love. It’ll stir even the heaviest of souls.

Truth is, the world without stories would be boring. And I want to make sure mine is worth telling.

A twenty-something dreamer running with the wolves. Reportage / travel photographer, writer for @Moment, hiker, and yoga teacher based in the wild Southwest.

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