The camera has given me a new way to see, even as I close one eye and narrow my vision to that which fits in the viewfinder: an opportunity to focus on the small, the unobtrusive in my life. My eyes rest on a still life they’ve glanced over a hundred times. I experiment with holding my breath to steady my hands. Inhale, click, exhale. Inhale, exhale, click.
As a novice, I have to slow down, observe the light quality and any shadows, focus the lens with attention, consider how I want to frame the image. This is not second nature, and it’s an opportunity to be patient, first of all with myself.
It’s helping me notice the small graces of the imperfectly folded stack of clean dish cloths my four-year-old offered, a mother dove nested safely in our palm tree, the sunlight blooming in my baby’s hair, wild curls that mimic mine, their wonder at watching street construction.
The everyday extraordinary.
This is grace: there is no need to perform, just the gift of eyes being opened to see and give thanks.