There was an internal pull; tell me more, don’t tell me anything. Let me settle.

This essay is a pondering and I am sharing it with you to communicate the tangles in my own head. Perhaps they are like the ones in yours.

White is not pure. Have you ever noticed how many shades of white there are? Shades of blue in sand, pink and gray in the horizon? Purple at sunset? Even the white froth of the waves has iterations. As a painter, finding just the right shade of white is a worthy search. Working as a photographer, the very ability to capture  minimalist images, images that are primarily neutral, feels magical.

I think about this while sitting on the beach in Sayulita, Mexico at a beautiful resort, Playa Escondida.

The sand has stretch marks like the skin of a woman who has given birth and I cannot get this out of my mind. I will write about this, I think.

I worked to slow my shutter yesterday to capture the waves crashing on rocks and once I had that accomplished, looked and looked for that one detail, that one item that, for me, speaks. The close ups, the macro images excite and searching for that one story is all consuming.

I’m thinking about photography and environment and what spurs creativity, clarity and calm. How do we take the peace of one environment to a more challenging one?

I come here for the sea, the distance, the difference, and to settle my soul. It works every time and despite the nagging concern we had when we left, I do my best to let it all go in the warmth of the sun and sound of the ocean.

My phone has been off and in a safe since Sunday afternoon, and today is Wednesday. The only news I have received is from my daughter who spoke to her sister who told her Massachusetts is now under a state of emergency.

There was an internal pull; tell me more, don’t tell me anything. Let me settle.

This trip is different in that it takes me over 24 hours, a few margaritas, some seaside naps and lots of writing to even begin to relax. My heart was fluttering in my rib cage, I could feel my nervous energy trying to fight me outside my body, and that jittery jump that loves to caress our brain with thoughts of potential disaster or impending doom.

I had to physically shake that bitch off.

But she keeps coming back for me.

Our environment is either conducive to relaxation or provides sparks to explode our internal worries and fears. Home, unfortunately, is like that now.

I wonder how to keep the sense of impending doom at bay once I return, how I will focus and immerse myself in the countless projects I once had no time for.

The horizon is white with shades of gray that lift to the clouds with deepening tones of blue. She has changed from vibrant shifts of blue and green into a blue white. I think today will be cloudy, but my body can use a rest from the sun. 

The time to return home is approaching and I will need to adapt to reality.

The very thought makes my heart rate increase and I find it harder to fill my lungs with air. I do not sleep and know I will need daily candlelit baths to comfort my jittery self. 

We always find a way, we humans. Once the shock wears off, we find a way. I trust that will be the case now as well. Just like white has iterations and shades, so too does our current world situation.

I am searching for kindness and comfort and truth and wanting to remain in my body, seeing and hearing, so I take out my camera and try to find a way to tell the story of white, how she flirts with us, deceives us and can only be understood when we are present, quietly listen and observe.