My name is Hannah, and I’m a friend of Laura’s. When she asked me to do this guest blog post, and told me I would be writing about inspiration, I was admittedly worried. My inspirational motivation does not come from the same source as Laura’s. She finds her inspiration in the world around her. She is able to see the elegance of a streetlamp, or capture the innocence of a child’s face. As a photographer she is completely engaged with the universe. I am in awe of this personality. The one who is part of the world, who walks within it, completely immersed in the wonder and beauty of life.
My inspirational source and personality are opposite to that of the photographer’s. I am lucky to remember my $78 point and shoot camera, I walk past the streetlamp without noticing it, and I’m often too busy contemplating the innocence of children to notice its presence. I can usually be found buried somewhere deep inside the recesses of my own head, struggling to understand the complexities of life, and striving to uncover solutions to the problems in the world. Until something strong enough from the outside pulls me, reluctantly, into the frenzy of the present, I am most content to stay there. Occasionally, my inner world is disrupted by something inspirational. For me, it usually comes in the form of words: quotes, lyrics, speeches. Words have the power to encourage me to keep striving to uncover the many mysteries of the human condition, in my own way. They speak to me in ways that images speak to Laura, yet we both achieve inspiration for the life we want to lead.
Where Laura sees the beauty in the world, I see the pain. And both are necessary in our quest to understand our place in this world. I need her to remind me of the beauty, to see the wonder and simplicity of life. And she needs me to remind her of the suffering, to not let her forget the complexities and unfairness in the world.
We need each other. Laura and I. You and I. The entire world with its myriad of elements and ideas depends on the boundless inspirational potential that abides in each of us. Laura is not here simply to see the beauty of the world, but to share it with others. I am not here to retreat into my thoughts and hoard them, I am obliged to use them to understand and help those around me. Even though we may perceive our existence on this planet differently, we are all here, together, uniquely suited to our environment and inspired in our own way. It is each person’s responsibility as an inhabitant of this earth, to inspire others. If we simply determine to live in our own truth using the abilities and talents available to us, and treating others with respect and dignity, imagine what kind of inspirational world we could create.