Michelle Coppini Photo-Shoot

Words + Photos by Michelle Coppini

Featured in the October 2019 Issue

Up and down. An endless cycle of highs and lows. The peaks and valleys strung  together to encompass a life-story. Snapshots of your successes imprinted on your memory just as prominent as the failures. 

How high was your climb?

How long was your race?

How fast was your time?

How good did you do in light of others?

How much better will you do next time?

Will you make it, will you reach that peak? Arriving at your summit of success.

A success that is measured by your answers to those above questions.

The “best” beckons and so we climb.

Climb high and always needing to reach higher.

Always grasping that next rung on the ladder of our “best.”

Stretching for our peak potential with greedy eyes and peer-pressured motivation.

“Reaching for the sky,” because where we are is somehow where we believe we aren’t supposed to be. Where we are isn’t, “good enough.”

This race. This climb.

It has me burnt out.

Its false promises of contentment and happiness have set me on a course for comparison and a daily date with defeat.

A road that began with beautifully pure intentions but through execution has transformed to muddy unkind trails. Potholes filled with selfish motives, shallow thoughts and actions that seem deeper than they really are.

Spinning around this foggy setting, solitude whispers hello and through her lonely shadows I sense forgetfulness. 

Somehow, I have forgotten.

I have forgotten the “why” of my heart’s motivation. 

Looking inwards I am not only faced with unremembered intentions but the bold presence of their counterfeit replacement. 

One that measures worth with “likes” and beauty with emoji “hearts.”  One that hungers for notoriety and is never satisfied with the status quo. This unsatisfied motivator is an unquenchable beast that has pulled me away from where I truly long to be.  Drawn me from WHO I long to walk WITH.

Who sets my feet on high places and lifts my heavy head.

Whose nail-pierced hand I hold and whose companionship is more precious than gold.

Any ladder I climb. Any mountain I scale.

Any ocean I swim. Any desert I trek.

With Him by my side it is always right.

In His presence my “why” takes shape. It settles into the deep parts of my soul. Taking its rightful place in the foundations of my heart. 

With Him speaking and fashioning life around me, I cannot fail. With Him creating life inside me, I cannot miss it. With Him success takes on its rightful definition. 

Loneliness is forgotten and muddy potholes become a child’s dream as He holds my hand and jumps from puddle to puddle.

His fingers laced in mine and suddenly this climb is a thrill.  One still filled with uncertainty and unknown but with the One who has never failed (and who never will) my confidence swells.  Joyfully propelling me with new found purpose 

No longer is the push to “be best” a motivator. No longer this endless chase of selfish success. 

With HIM I truly run.

Run from a place of freedom and rest. Run from a place of truth and endless possibilities. Run till I fly, as He defines success, constructing it through surrendered friendship and raw conversations.

This climb was never meant to be done alone. Never meant to be a monologue of self triumph.

This climb was designed for intimacy. It is a call to depth. Depth of two hearts dreaming as one. An invitation into countless possibilities and the promise of triumph. An invitation to try, fail and try again. Never working towards worth but always working from it.

Lacing my fingers in His, I catch His bright eyes. Once again I head out towards my adventure. 

Jesse AnayaComment