I can think of no better way to wrap up our month of collaboration than to feature one of the most touching collaborations I’ve seen. I asked Tracie and Angela to share their thoughts on their collaboration 2 lives 2 mamas and they were both excited to do so. Reading their words on this heartfelt experience really tugged on my heartstrings. I hope this inspires you to strike up your own collaboration. Leilani and I are starting one soon, thanks to all the magic this month created!
Here is what Angela had to say:
“The experience for me of doing a year of moments with dear Tracie was life-altering, and life-affirming. Looking back, the whole experience was touched by a special kind of magic… I never really expected that!
I was very new to online sharing at the time I “met” Tracie via flickr. I was also really new to documenting my days with a camera. In fact…I had only been gifted a camera a few months before connecting with Tracie. I had just been through a really difficult time in my life which culminated in moving away from the home I was madly in love with, into a house that I felt very little connection to…I was grieving a life I felt sure was my destiny. I began to use the gifted camera as a tool to “look” for beauty in the unfamiliar surroundings of my new home, my new life.
I discovered that I was in LOVE with photography, and quickly began to devour blogs and books dedicated to documenting daily moments through the camera lens. I joined flickr and started sharing photos there. Tracie came along and started commenting on my photos, and I instantly felt such a sweet tenderness for her, this mama in California who was taking the time out of her day to reach out to me via my photos. I wasn’t sure at the time if I wanted to continue to share my images on flickr, so when Tracie asked me to do a year of shared moments with her, (inspired by the most wonderful book, A Year of Mornings) I thought “Well, why not?!” Little did I know that this kind of sharing would lead me closer to my family…more deeply connected to my home, inspired to learn new things about the art of photography, and incredibly in love with a family in California that I hadn’t met!
That year in my life really changed so much for me. It wasn’t always easy to take a photo, write a little about it, and send it to Tracie. But knowing that we were dedicated to this project together, and knowing she was there ready to receive whatever I had to offer, and knowing I was committed to doing the same kind of supportive receiving for her really bonded me to our efforts. I grew to care so much for her and her dear family. We shared the small graces, and painful pitfalls, that come to us unexpected throughout the course of a year in our lives. Like those in a family do…and so now, when I think of Tracie, I think of her like a sister. A soul sister.
If any of you are interested in trying a project like this, I strongly encourage you to give it some energy. What will come back to you, will have the potential to root you deeply into your beautiful life, and connect you to the one you share the collaboration with in a way that will leave you with a forever friend.”
It’s something I’m proud of because often I set goals for myself to most often break but with a partner it gave me more incentive to complete what we had started. During this year lots happened of course, (celebrations lots of them, deaths, illness, diagnosis’s, diets, goals shared, failures, successes) we shared details of our lives with each other we got to know each other on a deeper level without ever having heard each others voices. It was like a virtual pen pal. And the most magical of all for me was the feeling of being the same, having sort of like parallel lives, one in Indiana one in California. There were times that our images were almost identical; it was mind blowing, similar moments in two different worlds. I also learned a great deal from Angela, she introduced me to new music, new poets, recipes and new ideas. It was a gift, it was a blessing and I will always be grateful for that year of moments we shared. I started it in blog from because I missed it, I sort of had a period of mourning our finished project, like “now what?” So I asked if she didn’t mind me re-posting our moments via blog and this is how the blog began. I meant to do it a year after, got busy left it a while and came back this year to finish up.
I was encouraged by two strangers who were once strangers and became friends just like me and Angela and this makes our world such a beautiful place when bonds can be formed from miles apart.
I would recommend this to anyone because it’s a gift a gift that will last a lifetime.”