Three photos of water and waves. One at sunset, the middle one during mid-day, and the last one at night. From the Series, The Value of a Moment, 2021 © Rahshia Sawyer
Three photos of water and waves. One at sunset, the middle one during mid-day, and the last one at night. From the Series, The Value of a Moment, 2021 © Rahshia Sawyer
The Value of a Moment, 2021 © Rahshia Sawyer

Resilience: Part One of Three

Finding Beauty Amongst the Chaos of Change: Orienting Your Compass

Sometimes you can’t see what you’re learning till you come out the other side…

Photograph of a wave about to break, with the peaks of water lit with the setter sun. “We can all emerge from the breaking, leaving behind what once was, and become unbroken.”
Photograph of a wave about to break, with the peaks of water lit with the setter sun. “We can all emerge from the breaking, leaving behind what once was, and become unbroken.”

Part One: Orienting your Compass

As I take stock of the aftermath of 2020, I realize there is beauty in being broken. Not in the breaking, but the unbreaking. 2020 was brutal, and it broke me, forcing me to be uncomfortably vulnerable. It was a year when we collectively held our breath. In the chaos of change, we lose our frame of reference, the reference that shapes our individuality — from our preferences to our core beliefs. They have taken a lifetime to form, but chaos disrupts them instantly. We are forced to reckon with our nature of can-change, our innate ability to transform and grow. We need to make sense of and reframe our relationship to change. Instead of rushing our return to how things were, we must determine what we want to keep and what we want to change. And as we put ourselves back together, as we un-break ourselves, we can rediscover things we once loved but have forgotten, find missing pieces we didn’t know we needed, and unlock new, integrated versions of ourselves. And we need to connect with our capacity for vulnerability.

Photo of calm waves, light blue sky and water slowly moving. “I realize there is beauty in being broken. Not in the breaking, but the unbreaking”
Photo of calm waves, light blue sky and water slowly moving. “I realize there is beauty in being broken. Not in the breaking, but the unbreaking”
Photograph of a wave close up to see the deatile of the texture of water. “We do not need to busy ourselves with decorative remodeling in the midst of the worst year of many of our lives.”
Photograph of a wave close up to see the deatile of the texture of water. “We do not need to busy ourselves with decorative remodeling in the midst of the worst year of many of our lives.”
Photograph of the sun setting on the ocean. “It allows you to look at the difficult feelings. The jumbled, messy, disconnected feelings. Feelings that scare you — that break your frame of reference, leaving you lost.”
Photograph of the sun setting on the ocean. “It allows you to look at the difficult feelings. The jumbled, messy, disconnected feelings. Feelings that scare you — that break your frame of reference, leaving you lost.”
Photograph of a wave with white foam peaks. “What I have learned is that being brave enough to be vulnerable is the compass.”
Photograph of a wave with white foam peaks. “What I have learned is that being brave enough to be vulnerable is the compass.”
Image for post
Image for post
Photograph of the ocean at sunset, with the spray of waves showing. “. There is a newness here that we need to give time to develop. We need to provide this newness, this not-yet some time to can-change. To become beautiful.”
Photograph of the ocean at sunset, with the spray of waves showing. “. There is a newness here that we need to give time to develop. We need to provide this newness, this not-yet some time to can-change. To become beautiful.”
Photograph of Rahshia Sawyer and a Llama. “Rahshia Sawyer is a creative professional and third-culture individual based in the Washington DC area.”
Photograph of Rahshia Sawyer and a Llama. “Rahshia Sawyer is a creative professional and third-culture individual based in the Washington DC area.”

Rahshia Sawyer is a creative professional and third-culture individual based in the Washington DC area.

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