New England is super unique and that's why I love living here. But sometimes I catch myself gazing into utopian Colorado scenes on Instagram or myriad vintage photos streaming from Seattle. I get lost in the cool leather boots and endless flannel with misty mountains as a backdrop. I start to think I'd prefer to be there, amidst the sea of photographers, moving with the masses like one small thread on faded and ironic denim.
For the record, I tried the hipster thing…once. Because aren't all photographers hipsters? You'd think so if you spent enough time on social media. Anyway, I went to some shop that sold expensive skinny jeans. They didn't go over my calf muscle. Seriously. I was sweating just trying to get them up my freakishly large lower leg. It was the beginning and end of my short-lived hipster dream. I was happy though, because as silly as this story is, the last thing I really wanted was to fall in line with some new trend - even if that trend tries really hard not to be a trend.
This post isn't about dissing skinny jeans, oversized sock hats and big glasses you don't have a prescription for (though it is kind of fun). I have lots of stylish friends who take drool-worthy photographs. This post is about learning to be satisfied where I am, when I am and with who I am. It's been an interesting journey to 26, with some serious life changes in my early 20's, and lots of important questions going half-answered until now. I'm trying to fill in some of those spaces now between two jobs, two kids and a receding hairline. It's not easy- but then again I never expected it to be.
Once life hits warp speed, you realize how important it is to be mindful and focused on the things that matter most. God and family come first, always. Climbing city skylines and road trips might call out my thirst for adventure but fade into the background as the kids get fevers or have soccer practice. Wishing to be somewhere else, or someone else, even mildly, causes us to miss the most significant moments happening right here and the adventure never leaves, it just looks different.
I don't want to be in Colorado right now, as beautiful as it is. I want to be here, in New England, a few miles from the trails I used to ride my bike on as a kid. I want to walk under the trees with leaves the color of fire, holding the still small hands of my children. Lord knows they only get bigger from here. I want to be with my wife, sleepily going over our budget and schedule, trying to make ends meet and still go to bed with a smile. I want to seek the trails early in the morning with a few good men, before the children wake, to catch the sunrise over our mostly small hills in Connecticut. I want this adventure, the one God has given my family, here in New England. I am happy here and I hope you are too, wherever you are, whenever your are, whoever you are. Make today count.