On Try and Seeing

Lizzie Woo
4 min readNov 18, 2019
Photo by Author

I smoked a little of my homegrown while soaking in the bath this evening. The tiniest bit, because it’s potent. I figured that out yesterday, when I smoked just the littlest bit more than a tiny bit in my pipe in the late afternoon and felt the littlest bit anxious and uncomfortable for a short time.

T. told me that that feeling is the need to give your energy an outlet. A reason to engage in movement. For me, that also means engaging in expression. I need to remember that. Need to be aware what kind of headspace I’m in when I choose to smoke weed.

Sometimes I think it’ll help me relax and ground down, but if I’m already moving too quickly, it’ll amplify that kind of frenzy and make me feel the opposite of grounded. For just a short period, if I’m mindful and lucky.

How am I expressing myself right now? Today it was in the kitchen baking a batch of E.’s low carb crackers and playing with seasonings to make something tasty and distinct.

Today it was walking through the woods with my DSLR and paying attention. Not a difficult practice for me because I’m always paying attention during these slow and quiet walks, noticing the way the sunlight frames a swathe of ferns with an ethereal symmetry, the way a cobweb catches fire in the shadows or the glossy red cap of a mushroom stands vibrantly in a bed of fallen needles.

Sometimes I feel guilty how much I enjoy capturing nature with my camera during these walks, because “shouldn’t you be more still” and “shouldn’t you be more present”? The fact we’re all constantly running around with our phones trying to capture perfection instead of simply savouring the moment makes me feel like maybe I’m doing something wrong when I go trudging into the woods with my camera slung on my shoulder.

But you know what’s interesting about these walks and the practice of noticing my surroundings especially hard and taking special care to try and shrink the feelings into a photo? I’m more grateful and fulfilled and present than I probably otherwise ever feel.

I focus the lens and hold my breath and finally press the shutter, and I’m keenly aware of everything around and within me. Sometimes the picture doesn’t turn out and I carry on. There’s no point trying to make it happen if it wasn’t meant to be.

Lizzie Woo

30-something elder millennial writing from the heart.