Twin Flames: A Case Study
Two bodies. One soul. An idea fueled by our innate obsession with romance and our insatiable longing for connection. But do these connections exist or is it an enigma: a cleverly designed illusion which we can't help but ravenously consume? The idea is a tasty one! Who doesn't want to believe that there is a person out there who you have loved throughout lifetimes: a karmic love that you can't escape.
Listen, your girl is NOTHING if not a hopeless romantic with immense trust in the universe. However, I am also a realist who recognizes that this idea-- that there is someone in the world designed for you; someone who understands and mirrors you; someone whose own spirit is in perfect harmony with your own-- that this IDEA sells!
It gives * i n f i n i t e *
It gives * e t e r n a l *
It gives * p u r p o s e *
Now, none of these things are in anyway bad; but if you live in the real world you know that not all love is a written-in-the-stars, inevitable, or divinely energetic kind of love.
It's a beauty-in-the-mundane, choosing-you-everyday, growing-in-love kind of thing. It's not fantastical or otherworldly: it's temporal and real and raw.
But are the two mutually exclusive? Can you have a twin flame that burns softly-- one that is balanced by an earthly love rather than stifled by it?
Enter Anngilyn and Eric!
Never in my life have I experience a couple quite like these two. Their love and appreciation for each other leapt off their questionnaire: they made jokes, teased and complimented one another, and made it clear that they wanted to not only capture photos but make memories.
Anng and Eric decided that since they are PCSing soon, they wanted to head to Seaside for this session! When they arrived, we spent the first twenty minutes gabbing about their favorite spots and the memories that live at each. Anng giddily recalled to me a time when they sneakily drank wine out of mason jars while watching Transylvania 2 at the amphitheater. They giggle-fitted all over again when she recalled how they felt like they had to keep it hush hush that they were sippin' at a kids' movie. Watching them swoon over their memories here made it all the more clear to me how special these photos would be.
We started at Amavida Coffee which is where I first saw a glimpse of the love that lives in these two. You see, Anng loves coffee. Eric, not so much. He's a cream and sugar, hold the beans kind of guy. But, since Anng lives for a good cappuccino, Eric has taken her to nearly EVERY coffee shop in the area-- she indulges in her caffeine cravings and Eric enjoys a nice, lightly spiced, Chai.
Sure, many people wouldn't think anything of this gesture. But it is the way Anng gushed over this action of Eric's. Is the simple act of going with her to coffee shops so novel or sacrificial? No. But in her eyes, this small compromise, the minor indulgence in her interests, is everything. It's a reminder that her partner not only cares about her interests, but emboldens them: no matter how small.
As they sipped a cappuccino and chai, I watched them interact--whether through my eyes or my lens one thing was certain, these two are magnetic! Apart, they are a curly-haired firecracker with a heart of gold and a soft spoken, playful man with eyes only for her. No joke, I don't have a single image where his attention is NOT her. Evidenced below.
See! Totes adorbs and completely natural for them!
As the shoot continued, Anng and Eric showed me some of their favorite spots in downtown seaside. From the luxury bathrooms to food truck row to the gazebo by the sea, these two pranced and danced! Literally.
It's the simplicity for me.
When I look at the photos, I feel the ease of their connection. It's rare that a couple is comfortably playful in front of the camera; but I have come to learn that this effortless ease is because it's their normal. They aren't acting-- they aren't forcing-- they're connecting.
Or rather, reconnecting.
After the shoot, when I sent sneaky peekies to Anng (and when she was done fan-girling), she told me that earlier, just before the shoot, they had gotten into an argument. It was "nothing major, just stuff with the dog" but they talked it through afterward. It is what she said next that STUCK with me:
"We understood each other much better, and apologized for any harm if we inadvertently caused any... We stopped walking in the parking lot before meeting up with you and just took time to look at each other, hold hands, and reconnect. We talked about how our healthy conflict resolution draws us closer together, we talked about how understanding one another better gives us a more solid foundation for our future. We talked about how much we are committed to our relationship."
If Anng and Eric were solely twin flames, there would have been a palpable heat burning within them during this shoot. Their argument would have breathed life into their shared traumas and experiences and the flames would have enveloped them whole. That's the thing about a twin flame-- it is omniscient and insatiable. But terrestrial love-- the kind that is grounded in the Earthly plane-- the kind this is nourished with understanding and grows in time -- this love survives the slow burn of the flames. Its roots run deeper than fire can burn. Every choice, every conversation, every connection sprouts a new root and a stronger hold in this reality; in this lifetime.