Courting and betrothal

Going all in is a lot deeper than most people think. It’s beyond commitment by light years.

I love my wife. I am committed to death. I am not yet all in — I desperately intend to be. In a year from now I will love her more than I could possibly imagine. Ten years — fifty years?

Going from dating to engaged is the strangest transition. Nothing has changed; everything has changed. It’s time to put everything you are into the relationship. Don’t force it; don’t get physical. Find intimacy in honest conversation; talk about what you are most afraid of. Remember that this is a unique, once in a lifetime phase in your life. Be vulnerable. Again, don’t get physical.

I had a wide open path to back out of this opportunity. Honestly I wanted to. I find my life very peaceful but I realized much like a relationship — the more you put in the more you get out; in an exponential kind of way. Put in ten you get twenty; put in a hundred you get a thousand; put in everything…

Go all in or leave the table. Don’t wing it; don’t throw down with out knowing who you are up against. Be smart, pray, talk; listen.

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It’s in someone else’s hands now.

second and third dates

First dates are always awkward in some way or another. If you make it to your second date you’ll have a much better chance of getting to know someone, there still might be some reservations but this is where infatuation really sets in. The third date is where it gets a little tricky, all things considered its still pretty light but the conversation probably has already covered most of the surface stuff, your A-game, your ego. So what do you talk about? What do you feel? Third dates ask for some kind of commitment, not marriage but certainly courtship.

 

I loved day two of training — not just the level of honesty that was shared but also the amount of depth and care that has gone into this company is staggering. For that day, the infatuation was concrete.

 

Third date; realness, commitment. Thoughts about success and failure have been rolling around in my head the past few days. Intention, momentum, care, insight, faith, humility. I’ve always had the capacity for high levels of anxiety, perhaps even to a disorder some might say — in the sense that I let it get to me in such a way that I become incapacitated at times. The problem is when given a choice of putting myself into something, giving myself to a purpose, agreeing to something that there is a good chance that I may fail, I will most always choose the safer road, the quiet path, the gentle slope. Even the risks that I’ve taken I managed to order them in such a way that I push myself around the issue until I was forced to make the decision I wanted to do from the beginning — to commit, to risk failure, to risk being hurt. Doing it this way may work but the intention is lost, the momentum is slowed if not stopped, caring is not lost but it is strained. I want to have the insight, the faith and the humility to just go for it. Pull the trigger. Go.

 

Really where is my faith? What is it in? — My self? My leaders? My God?

 

These aren’t new problems, this isn’t some new combination of emotion and struggle that had never been felt before. The drive and passion of others is not some cosmic sign of my own failure.

The beginning

First days are always long and usually awkward. I’ve never enjoyed the standard, turn taking, “Hi my name is–I’m interesting because…” While today yesterday was just that, there was with it a sense of openness that is rarely accompanied. Maybe it’s just that I’m older now and have some kind of confidence (though honestly I was still shaking when it came to me.) Most everyone shared at least a little bit of what they were actually feeling, which–while taking a lot longer–brought a kind of comfortability that is so rarely present in situations of that nature.

While there was a lot talked about I feel a majority of my mind was taken up by breaking through my standard levels of self conscious thoughts. Honestly though I am some what content with my slow approach to friend making–which is good I suppose since that’s how I seem to have been made. The draw back obviously is not having that comfort zone of friendship to quickly wrap myself in–though the positive to that is being equally disconnected to everyone thus less likely to get stuck in a clique (if such things exist past school years)

I guess we’ll see what the second day will hold.

The commute is pretty nice though.

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Transitions

I suppose its pretty normal for life to be full of change–I don’t often enjoy it, even when I may know its good for me. Well this past week has been no exception; I’ll spare you the painful details but lets just say the only real consistent, not to mention mostly constant, emotions I’ve had the past seven days or so has been either anxiety, stress or fear–or mostly a combination of those.

Now I’m not about to turn this into a pity party, the only reason I really even mention those emotions is to express the gravity of the decision put before me. While some might not look on it as that big of a deal, for me it has been huge. Not only in and of its self but through out all of it what God was teaching me about himself and my response to him. I’ll probably get into those details as the weeks progress but I am sure you are wondering what in the world I am talking about.

Last week I was presented with an opportunity to take a position at a coffee company that is taking its first steps into the world of opening cafes. I can’t get into a ton of detail about it but the point anyway is that I’ve decided to take it– or at least start the training and trial process.

If you’ve kept up with my life at all over the past few years I’m sure you’ve seen at least glimpses of my attempts and struggles to take photography from a hobby into a full time career. This is not a cessation of that dream, or even entirely a putting on hold of it, but there will be naturally be a decline of my ability to do it full time professionally.

I’ve learned a ton the past few years, both about photography and business, but mostly about life.

 

Hmm, this is getting to wordy–I have that tendency.

The reason I share all this with you now is that I am hoping to chronicle in some form or fashion this experience and transition. Perhaps mostly for myself, but for those of you who have taken such good care of me  and do want to hear about this, it will be easier for me to just keep up with one location of story telling opposed to repeating it to all of you. So if you are interested in it, feel free to let me know, otherwise I may keep this more private; we’ll see.

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Nathan and Liz

Nathan and Liz have been good friends of mine for a long time. They recently got engaged and needless to say I am super excited for them. We had a picnic dinner with them a couple weeks ago, I happened to bring my camera so I figured I would take a few unofficial engagement photos! Hopefully soon we’ll have a full session to add to these, but for now here are a few of the best ones.