Conversations with the sun | Adri De La Cruz Self portrait artist, Chicago and West suburbs photographer

This is the recipe of life

said my mother

as she held me in her arms as I wept

think of those flowers you plant

in the garden each year

they will teach you

that people too

must wilt




in order to bloom

r u p i k a u r

I bought myself some sunflowers recently. It’s one of my favorite flowers mainly because of the big connection to the sun and how they are so in love with the sun. Yes I know all flowers technically need the sun, ha. But it seems to me like sunflowers are this special letter from the sun to us. They bathe in it, live for the sun. Then in a short amount of time die. They are flowers that make a statement. Even if you buy a bunch of them, every single sunflower has their own personality it seems. They remind me of Mexican Art. They remind me of resilience. I think of fire and power when I see that flower. All other flowers, especially in my favorite group are dainy, soft and beautiful but this flower is different. Yes, you can’t deny it’s beauty, but the thing I love most of all is their grandeur. It’s a helluva flower.

I started this self portrait series with the intent to focus on my hair. & how i’ve outgrown the hate for it finally at 31. Perhaps hate is a strong word but I felt it in waves towards my hair. I guess somehow the wilted sunflowers on my coffee table became the star of this series. And I don’t mind that at all. My hair can have it’s shinning moment another time.

I’m currently relearning and unlearning things I couldn’t even imagine I’d be in the middle of at 31. I stupidly had this notion when I was younger exhausted by life that by 30, I would be Ok. And it’s not that I’m not Ok, but it seems that the thing that I greatly tried to avoid. The very thing I didn’t want. I became. & now I am so grateful for that. For the way it made me come to acceptance. Im in the middle of healing, but more importantly in the middle of living.

You see when you aren’t your most authentic self, you keep pushing forward regardless of the pain to the next milestone. You think to yourself, perhaps when I have kids I’ll feel better. Perhaps when I get married it will be Ok. Or when I am wiser and older, I will finally get relief. But relief never comes because it doesn’t really exist. The tension we hold. That’s just how it feels when you’re constantly running. God knows I’m an expert at running, I could run forever if they’d let me. Pushing everything far far away from the front of my mind. I finally had this little rip in my heart, it brought me to my knees and it caused me to make all of the life changes I am currently living. My heart caught up with my mind I guess. So I am buying myself sunflowers because I am learning the difference between being alone and loneliness.



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