Despite the sin and sadness in this life, I have finally come to grips with the idea that God is sooo good. He shines through the darkness with so much power, that even the devil trembles. My mind, for so long, had been deceived into thinking that there was nothing good in this life. All the pain, anger, deceit, and black nights just seemed to be my focus.
But right now? I am overwhelmed. Down right struck in the chest with how God has ignited this feeling inside of me that loves more, strives more, and ultimately sees the LIGHT. My photography has taken a turn for the extraordinary and what I see around me I cannot remain sad about. Even with the passing of my dear maternal grandmother, I have found the beauty in her death (I will talk more about that in another post).
For right now I want to speak out about my cousins. I have a few sets and maybe not as many as some might have, but I love each one of them. Here, though, I want to mention the ones I grew up with. The ones that were seriously like siblings. We laughed, played, gained scars, cried tears, fought passionately, dreamed, and grew up together. Over the past few years we all kind of moved our separate ways, though.
I was the first to take the plunge into adulthood and so I pretty much left the gang without much thought. I look back regretting the years where I could have danced in new experiences with them. How I wish I could have hashed out my mistakes with them and been the better for it. I wonder what it would have been like to be there when hearts were broken, challenges were conquered, or passions were discovered.
This past weekend I felt like I was given a second chance. Not at recovering those years, but of living in our 20s and 30s together as adults with puttering babies and careers. Love is amazing like that. It always comes back around full circle.
This above photos is of Alisha and her baby, Huck. We were all sitting together in the funeral home after the service for our "Grandma D.", when I was struck by this view. I immediate thought of my grandmother and how I knew she would have captured this moment. She was a photographer during our childhood. I felt so connected with her and this moment. But back to Alisha. She is a quiet spirit and very similar to my brother, Bobby. She loves down to earth stuff and living on her farm with Charles. Growing up she followed me around and could always be found smiling and laughing with that little giggle of hers.
When I think about looking like someone, who is not my mother, I think of my cousin Abby. I am almost freaked out just looking at this image of her. I see my mom, aunt, grandmother, and myself. Yet it is still Abby. Growing up she was the little one of the crew (she is 9 years my younger) and I can remember the day she first walked. It was a major event during Thanksgiving one year at Great Grandma Dorn's farm in PA. I found out this weekend we have a similar personality, but to make things different she love all things cow girl/boy. I have no desire to ride a horse, so I will leave that to her.
Now who could resist hanging with a person with this face? Tommy is only a month younger than my brother and they are pretty much more than brothers. If I want a GOOD laugh or to hear about a nostalgic story of our childhood with bouts of laughter, Tommy is the guy to see. He is determined and will do anything he puts his mind to. Sometimes our strong older sibling spirits clashed as kids, but I wouldn't trade him for anyone. He is the real deal and will speak his mind. This picture makes me think of my grandfather and his beard. It is so weird to see it on my kid cousin. He is also the father of two sweet little girls and a husband to an amazing lady, Julie.
As I get older and enjoy my 30s, I become more and more in need of family. It is very different than the safety I felt as a child among my crazy family. More like, we all are so different and yet the same, so it all seems familiar and inviting. It hasn't always been easy for all of us. We have been through a lot and I hope that it only ignites the light inside each of us and brings us all HOME. Yes, God is good.