THERE ARE TWO WAYS IN LIFE: THE WAY OF NATURE AND THE WAY OF GRACE - from the film The Tree Of Life.
I have been thinking a lot about these words lately. What did Terrence Malick think when he wrote them down? What did they mean to him? And more important what do they mean to myself?
I didn't really know until I looked through a file of pictures from last year's family trip to Asia.
It was my first time in Thailand. I had recently bought my first camera and I was looking forward to photograph the ocean, the beaches. I wanted to take family portraits, and maybe even catch one or to wild animals with my new bought canon.
On our way to the hotel in Khao Lak the arriving day we drove pass a huge army boat lying in the grass on the right side of the road. The strange thing was that we were far away from water, so it seemed as if it had been dropped from the sky.
This was the first real proof and evidence, I was about to see, from the tsunami disaster the 26th of december 2004.
-A terrifying way of nature.
Even though the cities, and almost all the hotels and beaches had been restored we were often reminded of the catastrophe when we walked around and talked to thai people. They never brought up the subject themselves of course but just by looking into their eyes it felt as if they were telling me their whole story over and over again.
But despite all this sorrow nature had brought upon them, they still seemed to have a graceful eagerness to continue their lives. Honoring those who passed away that Christmas day seven years ago, by living even more. Wanting more for themselves and for there families.
The children that I met made the biggest impression on me. Many of them had all ready start working, some of them were very young. "And I thought to myself that maybe nature took away their childhood and their right to be only children with imagination and without responsibility. When I worked with these pictures I tried to imagine what they'd might be dreaming about. Things every child dream about.
Riding elephants, having a pet, a flower garden, fishing on the sea."
I try to remember their faces when I'm struggling in my own life. Sometimes our lives don't turn out they way we've planned or maybe something happens that changes our entire way of living it.
Life is not always easy but first when I accept my situation I can also start doing something about it. Only I can decide when I'm ready to leave the past behind and start taking paths forward. This doesn't mean you have to forget, but maybe learn to live with it. The past might even make you stronger.
I didn't take as much photos of my family as I had wanted, nor of the beach or from our hotel - even though we had the most wonderful vacation.
I took photographs of inspiring people struck by nature and touched by grace.