I turned to JD a few nights ago and asked if he felt he belonged. With scrunched eyebrows he asked, “huh?” Do you feel like you belong, I asked, in Newport Beach, in the business world, in rooms crowded with people? After placing groceries in the backseat of the car, he said, “yeah, I belong.”
It was that simple for him.
My husband has the ability to simply walk into a city, industry, or room and be so captivated with the energy that he takes ownership in whatever crevice he can find. I, on the other emaciated hand, feel like a vagabond in most places. Don't mind me, folks, just passing through.
For most my life I tiptoed around in order to go unnoticed, but starting a business changed that for me. I can no longer float. My feet must rest squarely in the area in which I reside, look people in the eye, and own the space I occupy. Why? Because if I don't believe I belong, I never will.
It doesn't come easy, but I must try.
I photographed a wedding in Mexico last weekend, I'm headed to Paris for a business summit this week, and I'll return to start a new project in Los Angeles. In the span of 14 days I'll say I'm a photographer, creative entrepreneur, and dreamer. And while I may struggle with where, precisely, I belong in that space, I'll continue to force myself to believe that I do.
I'm writing this as a reminder to my future self, to commemorate the moment when life was an awkward balance between business identity and belonging. A time when I publicly admitted I'm struggling. And embrace it.