an athlete photographer's blog

Dear Diary

Perseverance is what happens when you feel like you can’t keep going, but giving up isn’t an option.


The Run
5.00 miles

The PictureGrey Outlook

The Recap

Can I tell you that I’m on the verge of giving up on this whole picture running business?  If I wasn’t so darn stubborn, I probably would give up.  But I said I would do this for all of 2015.  No matter how hard it gets, this was going to be my thing for the year.

And now that I’m in my fourth month, you may think it all comes so easy for me.  You may think that every click of the camera is picture perfect.  You may think that every blog post is a breeze to put on paper.  It is so not true.  I’m struggling.  I’m in the not-even-half-way through the project point where it feels like I’ve used up all my material and there isn’t anything left to photograph.  Flowers, birds, trees, water, trails, cows, dogs, cats, CHECK! – What’s left?  I’m certain there is more to photograph.  More to see.  But it is getting harder.  The other months were low hanging fruit and now I have to be more creative, more clever than I was before — which takes more of me.  And sometimes I want to just run, but I can’t not take pictures too.  It’s engrained in me now, for better or for worse.

Here is a conversation I had with my little six-year-old yesterday:

Me: I’m going for a run.  Should I take my camera?
L: Yes.
Me: What if I don’t see anything to take a picture of?
L: Oh Mommy, there is always something.  You just gotta keep your eyes open.

I guess I have taught her well.  Out of the mouth of babes, as they say.

So I took my camera because as I told her a few minutes later, I wouldn’t be the picture runner if I didn’t have my camera, I’d just be another runner.  To try and fail is better than not trying at all, right?  Let me tell you, that’s easier said than done.  You have to also be able to pick yourself up every time you fall.  And each time picking yourself up gets a little harder.  But in the back my mind, I hear my mom saying, “oh! Don’t give up! You can do it!” Just like she has my whole life.  And I always want to cry back, But I can’t!   But usually, I say, Ok, I can keep going just a little bit longer. And then silently to myself, But I don’t know how much longer.

Running yesterday was nice.  I love to run.  It clears my head and while I’m on the road my mind can wander.  Not far from the house, a turkey flew right in front me.  Of course, I didn’t have my camera out and there was no way I could have gotten a picture of him even if I had it out.  No one could have known he was going to zip across at that moment.  And I thought, well just seeing him was enough for me.  Which made me think that was what this whole picture running idea is all about.  It’s about getting out and seeing.  It’s about challenging myself and pushing myself to do something difficult.  No one said this was going to be easy.

Looking back, I realized I had gotten soft the last few years.  I don’t have the military pushing me to run anymore so I wouldn’t go if the weather wasn’t ideal or if I was a little sore.  Picture running has forced my lazy self out of the house on more than one less than ideal day.

I want people too see me running with my pack and wonder what I have in there?  What is she training for?  I always feel like I look like a tough runner when I have my pack on and I’m running down the dusty road.  But what’s the point of looking tough if you aren’t actually tough?

In my first post, I asked the question, Can You Fall?  Well, can you?  I guess I can because here I am picking myself back up and saying, Ok I will try again.

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11 thoughts on “Dear Diary”

  • Ahhh!!! You bring tears to my eyes! So I have to say: Alexia don’t give up! I believe in you. Goodness you are the one who inspires me because I know how hard it is to overcome inertia and write every day. Yes it is about discovery. Yes it doesn’t work on some days but I wouldn’t call that failure or even falling. It’s just laying the foundation for greatness. You have more than just a foundation now … you have a structure and an identity. And the passion. Do it for yourself. No one else. Love, Mom

    • Thank you Mom! I guess I just think sometimes of all the times I called home and wanted to quit the academy and you would say, oh you can do it! I’m just disheartened and discouraged.

  • Your pics are great! These ones are just perfectly “Spring” 🙂
    You’re keeping me motivated to work on my blog, my pics, and my running, so let’s both keep it up!! We got this!

    • Thanks Vanessa! That’s a deal! I’m going to keep on keeping on. And these picture are all from yesterday, but only the bridge one is from my run. The other two are just from around the house.

  • Alexis this has encouraged me in my own struggle! Thanks for being so honest and real. I love your photos so much. I am so grateful for the beauty they bring to my life!

  • Alexia, YOU my wonderful, talented, beautiful, courageous Granddaughter
    can make it through these up’s and down’s , I know it for sure.

    I very much love your blogs, I re-read and look at the pics most days, because it lifts me up.

    Thanks, Thanks, & Thanks
    Love you

  • Alexia, On those days you don’t see anything you haven’t already photographed have you tried taking a photo of your feet/shoes? Of your shadow? Just wait until those Kansas sunflowers start blooming,reaching up to try and touch that wide expanse of Kansas sky. Do you have the opportunity to run at different times of the day? The very same thing looks totally different under the changing light conditions of earlier or later day. I don’t know. Just some ideas. You’ve come this far and it’s been delightful. Even an anthill is interesting if you have a macro lens.

    • Oh Ruth, Thank you for the encouragement!! I do try to run at different times, but it really depends on who is available to watch the little one. Thank you for the ideas. I was thinking that now that I have a remote that I might be able to try some more running shots.

  • As that great theologian, Cmdr. Peter Quincy Taggart, once said, “Never give up! Never surrender!” – Galaxy Quest.

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