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when i was a kid, my favorite thing to do was lie under trees and look up at the sunlight flickering through the branches waving in the wind. i felt like God lived in trees and i could talk to Him through the sun... i still feel like that. i can't describe the feeling it gives me.... i've tried many times and failed miserably at capturing in words just how special it makes me feel. it's beyond explanation. i really don't know why it's so meaningful - it just is. .
when my parents built our famously huge Bort-Fort in the late 80's, we planted 2 huge trees in the backyard together, and those trees have meant more to me than most people in my life. unfortunately, a few weeks ago - we had to chop those trees down... 32-year-old trees... my magical trees... the trees that have healed my heart time after time, the trees that hold my wishes and prayers... the trees i wept to God in... the weeks leading up to their demise were some of the saddest weeks of my life, and mourning those trees and what they meant to me has been so much harder than i could ever explain.
it feels dumb to say out loud - but those trees were part of us... part of me... and now they're gone. like all things - they eventually had to leave. and i miss them... i miss them so much, i have tears rolling down my cheeks as i type this. it's like a sudden death happened and i'm lost and confused and mourning my loved ones.
i get unbelievably sad when i look out into our empty backyard, now... it's not the same... i don't even want to look out there... i don't even want to live here, anymore. my heart is broken, and i miss my magical trees.
this video is to honor them. they made me feel so special, and calm, and peaceful, and like i mattered, and like everything was going to be okay. they made me grateful to be me - because i got to grow under them... with them.
MUSIC: "Love" by yehezkel raz
music licensing//song: https://artlist.io/song/17216/love-you
music licensing//artist: https://artlist.io/artist/614/yehezke...
CAMERAS: all footage shot on my little Android Galaxy S9
Contact Shelly Bort:
website: shellybort.com music:
ever since i was a little kid - i have had a great need for stillness. i never knew that's what it was, but it definitely made itself known. i have always been extremely empathetic; most counselors, therapists, and my parents and friends even say to a fault - and that takes a big toll. it's exhausting and dangerous. as i've grown up- i have learned to somewhat protect myself, but i haven't learned how to ALWAYS protect myself, and most of the time before i even know it's happening - i'm drained. it makes me susceptible to narcissists, sociopaths, and energy drainers. it's surrounded me with stalkers and addicts and people who are lost and sad and need encouragement. that's the other challenging part of my personality - i'm an enneagram 7: "the enthusiast, the cheerleader, the entertainer". all 3 of those things are quite exhausting to a highly sensitive person, even though it's my natural state to be those things. as an extroverted introvert and empath - merging all these personality traits has led me straight into a crisis of mind and body this year.
several months ago, i fell into a deep anxiety-driven depression and haven't been able to pull myself out. right now - i'm on a doctor prescribed wellness-retreat. i am only 3 days in.. in the mountains, in the cool, in nature, in the quiet... and already feel more at ease and more at peace than i have in the last 2 and a half years. my mind is starting to relax. the tightness in my chest is starting to let go. i'm starting to sleep and don't feel like sobbing or screaming every time something slightly irritates me.
dealing with my empathetic nature has been a very double-edged sword. on one hand - i believe it makes me a great human, a good friend, a good listener, a good teacher, a good daughter, and a good wife. it helps me be non-judgemental, kind, encouraging to those in pain and to people in general. HOWEVER - when i don't take care of myself (and like i said, for most of my life i have had no clue how to take care of this part of me) - it makes me a nightmare to be around. i can't listen, can't concentrate, am angry for reasons i can't understand or explain, start crying at the drop of a hat, am constantly filled with intense anxiety, can't be near people i'm not completely comfortable around, and can't get more than an hour of fitful sleep at night.
and so - i need stillness. i'm needing it more and more and more. i'm finally learning how to ask for it, and how to be ok with giving it to, and creating it for myself. it has always been a very hard thing for me to say it's okay to be me. but i can do it for everyone else- so now it's time to learn how to do it for myself. being a highly sensitive person is TOUGH, but the stillness it requires- i love. i'm thankful for these challenges, i'm thankful for the uniqueness of me. it makes me grateful to be alive... and grateful to be me.
1. music: "the light within" by The Westerlies
2. "AnaCptainslogue" by Noir et Blanc Vie
all footage shot and edited by shelly bort
when i was 7 - my parents gave me my very first camera. i have had one attached to me every single day since. taking pictures was always my favorite thing to do as a kid, and as soon as i turned 12 - i began begging to use our huge, 80's RCA video camera as much as possible. however, i didn't have videotape editing capabilities as a kid, so even though i preferred taking video - i had no way to turn it into what i envisioned.
in high school, i began making slideshows with all the pictures i took, and in my late 20's - technology (that i could afford) had finally caught up, and i was able to film and edit video like I had always dreamed of doing. it's been one of the main loves of my life, and i am so, SO thankful to have had that privilege. it makes me grateful to be alive... and grateful to be me.
video credits: music: "eternal garden" by dan henig
bz wedding footage: http://sbfilmsca.com/
all other footage: shellybort.com
from 2007 - 2012 i made over 250 videos on my old youtube channel sbort, and posted over 100 original songs from my musicals here, on this channel. and then - i decided to step away from youtube. i have uploaded the occasional "musical preview" of a new show, or a "favorite vocal moments" or "music video" from a new album i'm releasing, but over the last 8 years, i haven't had time to dedicate to just making videos for fun! quarantine has changed all that, and i am making a promise to myself (and to my mental health) to upload every week from here (october 8, 2020), until who knows when! feel free to keep me accountable :D
i will be releasing videos weekly, sometimes 2 times a week, in something i'm calling "gratitude stories". each video will focus on something that makes me happy to be me, and grateful to be alive. i invite you to leave comments about what makes you happy to be you, and what makes you grateful to be alive! i also invite you to join me in making videos again! there used to be a whole group of us musical-theatre-nerds back in the day (2008... 2009... 2010) who hung out on youtube and collaborated and flew around the world to see each other... where did we all go? we all grew up and grew away from making videos for fun.
if it makes you truly happy to make videos - i invite you to join me in my pledge to get back to the stuff that brings us joy. let's build each other up and celebrate who we are right now - and who we are becoming because of these difficult times. we can do this - together. our lives are waiting❤️
video credits: music: "kick in" by shelly bort
stock footage: videvo.net
personal videos & photographs: by shelly bort