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There, in the midst of the sea’s vast landscape, stood a seagull—ordinary, unremarkable, but undeniably a part of the scene’s raw beauty. It was a moment that taught me the power of embracing our own plainness, just as the bird embraced the wind.

About The Visual Intervention

Received the Visual Intervention in 2011 – Fort Fisher, North Carolina.

Have you ever watched a seagull? Really watched one? Not the fleeting glance you give as it swoops by or as it pecks at leftovers on the beach, but a long, thoughtful look. I did that recently at Fort Fisher, and it made me think about who we are and how we see ourselves in this world.

This seagull wasn’t a showy bird, not the kind to inspire awe with the majesty of an eagle or the grace of a swan. It was just a seagull, ordinary as can be. But there, against the backdrop of the ocean, with its rhythmic waves and sprawling sand, the bird was as much a part of the beauty as any sunset or mountain range I’d ever seen.

It struck me then, how much of life is about accepting who we are. Much like the seagull, we spend our days trying to fit into the lifescape we’re in, often feeling we fall short or don’t quite belong. We can be so harsh on ourselves, focusing on our flaws, the ways we’re not like those we admire, or the ideals we struggle to become.

But what if we’re looking at it all wrong? What if, instead of picking at our imperfections, we took a step back, much like I did with that seagull, and saw the bigger picture? We’re all part of this intricate, beautiful tapestry of life, each with our own role to play, our own unique presence to contribute.

Acceptance, I’ve come to realize, is a bit like the ocean’s tide. It comes in waves, sometimes more powerful than others. It’s about learning to stand on our own stretch of beach and not feeling less for the space we occupy. It’s about seeing the art in our existence—the shadows, the light, the way we fit into the vastness around us.

Life is imperfect. We falter, we fall, and we’re as flawed as they come. But there’s something quietly magnificent about all of it. About owning who we are, where we stand, and embracing the imperfections that make us real. Much like that seagull, standing there, not trying to be anything other than what it was, and in that simplicity, finding a serene place in the world.

So here’s to being ordinary, to being flawed, and finding our place in the grand scheme of things. Here’s to looking at ourselves as a natural part of something larger, something inherently beautiful. Here’s to the journey of self-acceptance, where we learn to embrace the art of our humanity and the masterpiece that is life.


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