John F. Kennedy in the nineteen sixties famously quoted fellow Irishman George Bernard Shaw. Two men looked out of their prison window to the outside. One saw nothing but mud and the other one stars. I’m paraphrasing a little bit but I hope you are moved by the idea as I continue to be.
Don’t ask what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country.
I don’t think we have a choice but to look up. I think this is our natural default position. This is how we are born and how we spend the formative years of our life. Then something happens. We call it growing up, but I call it the corruption of our dreams.
I’m not smart enough to come up with insightful conclusions why but I do understand based on my own experience that we trade in childhood dreams for adulthood stability. Perhaps that is a good thing. The world can’t be a good place when we act like children, and lets face it, some of our politicians act like spoiled children. So having stability is very necessary but we can’t stay there.
Stability is not terribly exciting. It’s just stable. It’s as though we are born dreaming, learn to fend for ourselves as adults and are meant to go back to dreaming as we get older. I notice this by looking at life through my kids. I embrace it by helping them do what they love to do and in turn figuring out what I love to do as well.
Yesterday I was at a production meeting for the play Chicago which will open in my town early 2020. What the hell was I doing there? I mean I know I was there because I said yes to being the official photographer, but come on, what the hell was I doing there? I love the theatre. I love music, the arts, and drama. Being involved is amazing and I hope it is intimately connected to the photography business I need to become stable so I can dream some more.
Life is funny.
It’s all where you choose to look. You can either see the mud and get depressed by it, or you can look up at the millions of stars and dream out loud. You can either ask what you can do for yourself, or you can step outside yourself and ask what you can do for other people.
Doing things for other people is better.
It’s the fuel that drives your dreams.
Photo credit: https://unsplash.com/@gwenong