Cory's always had a desire to reach the unknown. Ever since he was a young high school dropout, he's been using photography as a way to educate himself and to explore this big, complex world we live in.
But he never guessed that a single self-portrait, which "was really just my way of dealing with stress," would catapult him to a whole different level.
The portrait "push[ed] my life in such a dramatic direction," he explains in a Blue Chalk documentary. "Towards telling that larger story of what it means to hurt, what it means to triumph, and what it means to be human."
Now he's reaching new heights and digging deep to capture raw, intimate stories from all over the world as a photographer for National Geographic.
He's captured gorgeous faces, with years of stories.
Just to show a few. (See more of his Instagram pics here!)
Cory has proven that he'll do whatever it takes to reach the shot, to uncover the unknown, to create a new story, and most importantly, to get to know the people he's photographing.
Having that intimate connection matters, and it shows.
"It doesn't matter if I can't feel my fingers," he says. "It doesn't matter how my face stings and literally feels like it's getting sandblasted. What matters is that someone else can feel that by looking at a picture."
The world is a serious place with serious problems, but with people like Cory, more of us have a chance to see what we all share: life.
After all, we are one big human family. Let's get to know each other. This feature on Cory shows the magical human moments that can happen when we do.
Helga, Nathalie and Gina all have MS, and their experiences show how differently the disease can manifest.
It’s been 155 years since neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot gave the first lecture on a mysterious progressive illness he called “multiple sclerosis.” Since then, we’ve learned a lot. We know MS causes the immune system to attack healthy tissue, including damaging the brain and spinal cord. Resulting symptoms can be debilitating and include fatigue, blurred vision, memory problems and weakness. Huge advancements in our understanding of MS and its underlying causes, as well as treatment advances, have been made in the past few decades, but MS remains a complex and unpredictable reality for the 2.8 million+ people diagnosed around the world.
Ironically, the only real constant for people living with MS is change. There’s no set pattern or standard progression of the disease, so each person’s experience is unique. Some people with MS have mild symptoms that worsen slowly but sometimes improve, while others can have severe symptoms that drastically alter their daily lives.
All people with MS share some things in common, however, such as the need to stay informed on the ever-evolving research, find various lines of support and try to remain hopeful as they continue living with the disease.
To better understand what navigating life with MS really looks like, three women shared their MS stories with us. Their journeys demonstrate how MS can look different for different people and interestingly, how the language used to talk about the disease can greatly impact how people understand their realities.
Gina loves riding her horse, Benita.Courtesy of Sanofi
Gina—Hamburg, Germany (diagnosed with relapsing multiple sclerosis in 2017)
When her youngest son was 4 months old, Gina started having problems with her eye. She’d soon learn she was experiencing optic neuritis—her first symptom of MS.
“Immediately after the diagnosis, I looked up facts on MS because I didn’t know anything about it,” Gina says. “And as soon as I knew what could really happen with this disease, I actually got scared.”
As her family’s primary income provider, she worried about how MS would impact her ability to work as a writer and editor. Her family was afraid she was going to end up in a wheelchair. However, for now, Gina’s MS is managed well enough that she still works full-time and is able to be active.
“When I tell somebody that I have MS, they often don't believe me the first time because I don't fulfill any stereotypes,” she says.
Overwhelmed by negative perspectives on living with MS, Gina sought support in the online MS community, which she found to be much more positive.
“I think it’s important to use as many positive words as you can when talking about MS.” It’s important to be realistic while also conveying hope, she says. “MS is an insidious disease that can cause many bad symptoms…that can be frightening, and you can't gloss over it, either.”
To give back to the online community that helped her so much, Gina started a blog to share her story and help others trying to learn about their diagnosis.
Though she deals with fatigue and cognitive dysfunction sometimes, Gina stays active swimming, biking, riding horses and playing with her sons, who are now 11 and 6.
Cognitive dysfunction is common in MS, with over half of people affected. It can impact memory, attention, planning, and word-finding. As with many aspects of MS, some people experience mild changes, while others face more challenges.
Gina says that while there’s still a lot of education about MS needed, she feels positive about the future of MS because there’s so much research being done.
Nathalie is an award-winning rower with multiple international titles.Courtesy of Sanofi
Nathalie — Pennes Mirabeau, France (diagnosed with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis in 2002)
Nathalie was a teenager and a competitive athlete when she noticed her first symptoms of MS, but it would take four years of “limbo” before she was diagnosed.
“Ultimately, the diagnosis was more of a relief, than a shock,” she says. “Because when you have signs and you don’t know why, it’s worse than knowing, in the end, what you have.”
However, learning more about the disease—and the realities of disease progression—scared her.
“That glimpse of the future was direct and traumatic,” she says. Her neurologist explained that the disease evolves differently for everyone, and her situation might end up being serious or very mild. So, she decided to stop comparing herself to others with MS.
She said to herself, “We’ll see what happens, and you’ll manage it bit by bit.”
By 2005, Nathalie’s MS had progressed to the point of needing a wheelchair. However, that has not dampened her competitive spirit.
Nathalie began her international rowing career in 2009 and has won multiple world titles, including two Paralympic medals—silver in London and bronze in Tokyo. Now, at 42, she still trains 11 times a week. Fatigue can be a problem, and sometimes hard workouts leave her with muscle stiffness and shaking, but she credits her ongoing sports career for helping her feel in tune with her body’s signals.
“Over the years, I’ve learned to listen to my body, letting my body guide when I need to stop and take breaks,” she says.
Nathalie explains that she used to only look backwards because of the initial shock of her diagnosis. In time, she stopped thinking about what she couldn’t do anymore and focused on her future. She now lives in the following mindset: “Even when doors close, don’t miss out on those that open.” Instead of focusing on what she can’t do, she focuses on the opportunities she still has. Right now, this includes her training for the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris, where she will compete for another rowing medal.
“I only go forward,” she says. “Well, I try, anyway…It’s easy to say, it’s not always easy to do. But that’s what I try to do.”
Helga's Great Dane has become a helpful and beloved companion.Courtesy of Sanofi
Helga—Johannesburg, South Africa (diagnosed with relapsing multiple sclerosis in 2010)
When Helga first started having balance issues and numbness in her feet, she chalked it up to her training as a runner. But when the numbness moved to her face, she knew something was wrong. She never guessed it was MS.
“When I was diagnosed, I felt completely overwhelmed and clueless,” Helga says. “I felt that I had nowhere near enough information. I did not know anything about the disease…I had no idea that it was going to be a process of continually monitoring and adjusting your lifestyle.”
In the beginning, Helga’s symptoms developed slowly, and she didn’t appear ill to others. She was even able to run for a few years after her diagnosis, but she couldn’t do marathons anymore, and she began to fall frequently due to balance issues and right-foot dragging. Then her cognition issues became more problematic, especially in her job as a trainer in a printing company.
“My executive function, decision-making and short-term memory were affected to the point that I was eventually medically unfit for work,” she says. She stopped working in 2017.
However, she didn’t stop living life. Even though she could no longer run, she continued to swim competitively. She got a Great Dane puppy and trained him as a service dog to help her walk. She also serves as vice chair of the patient support organization Multiple Sclerosis South Africa, and she advises others who have been diagnosed to join a patient advocacy group as soon as possible to get reliable information and meet others with MS.
Helga says she is “hopeful” about the future of MS. “I must say that I am so grateful that we have all the new medications available, because my life would not be the same if it wasn't for that,” she adds.
Part of how she manages her MS is by looking at the positives.
“If I could tell the world one thing about MS, it would be that MS is an incurable disease of the nervous system, but it's also the greatest teacher of valuing your health, family, friends, and managing change in your life,” she says. “My life is diversified in a way that I never, ever thought it would, and MS has been honestly the greatest teacher.”
Each MS journey is unique – with each person impacted experiencing different struggles, successes, and feelings as they manage this unpredictable disease. But the common thread is clear – there is a critical need for information, support, and hope. We are proud to participate in World MS Day and share these incredible stories of living life while living with MS. To learn more about MS, go to https://www.sanofi.com/why-words-really-matter-when-it-comes-to-multiple-sclerosis.
This article was sponsored by Sanofi. Participants were compensated when applicable.
Molly was found tied to a tree by the new owners of the house.
Molly, an adorable, affectionate 10-year-old pit bull, found herself tied to a tree after her owners had abandoned her.
According to The Dodo, Molly had “always been a loyal dog, but, unfortunately, her first family couldn’t reciprocate that same love back,” and so when the house was sold, neither Molly nor the family’s cat was chosen to move with them. While the cat was allowed to free roam outside, all Molly could do was sit and wait. Alone.
Luckily, the young couple that bought the house agreed to take the animals in as part of their closing agreement, and as soon as the papers were signed, they rushed over to check in.
In a TikTok video, April Parker, the new homeowner, walks up to Molly, who is visibly crestfallen with teary eyes. But as soon as Parker begins cooing, “Baby girl…you’re gonna get a new home,” the pitty instantly perks up—all smiles and tail wagging.
“We are going to make her life so good,” Parker wrote in the video’s caption. “She will never be left all alone tied to a tree.”
The video has been seen upwards of 4 million times. Countless people commented on how enraging it was to see a dog treated so carelessly.
“I’ve had my dog since she was 7 weeks old. She just turned 10 a few days ago. I literally cannot imagine doing this,” one person wrote.”
Another added: “The tears in her eyes…she doesn’t understand why they could just leave her, it breaks my heart. People like that shouldn’t be allowed to be pet owners.”
Subsequent videos show Parker freeing Molly from her leash and introducing the sweet pup to her husband, with whom she was instantly smitten. It’s clear that this doggo was both relieved and elated to be taken in by her new family.
Since being rescued, Molly has accompanied her new mom and dad everywhere.
“She’s sticking to our side,” Parker wrote. “She won’t stop following us around. It’s so sweet.”
Parker has created an entire TikTok channel documenting her newfound pet’s journey, aptly named “Molly’s New Life,” showing Molly enjoying warm baths, plenty of treats, cuddles…all the finer things in life.
But what Molly seems to enjoy most of all is car rides:
It seems that Molly has gotten the safe, loving home she’s deserved all along.
We know that animal abandonment is fairly common. According to The Zebra, almost 4 million dogs are either given up to shelters or abandoned each year. And still, it’s really hard to fathom how humans can treat such innocent creatures with such blatant disregard when they provide so much pure joy.
Thankfully, there are folks out there like the Parkers who know that taking care of animals like Molly is one of life’s most precious offerings.
Stay up-to-date with the rest of Molly’s journey by following her on TikTok.
Editor's Note: Upworthy earns a percentage of revenue from the sale of items mentioned in this article.
In athletic wear, a good pair of leggings can make or break your workout experience. Comfort, flexibility, and style are key factors contributing to the perfect pair, and finding ones that marry these elements seamlessly can be challenging. Whether you're a yoga enthusiast, a gym-goer, or someone who values comfort in their everyday attire, these seamless leggings offer something for everyone. Dive in to discover the perfect pair that will elevate your athletic wardrobe and enhance your workout routine.
Experience comfort and style with the Alphalete Amplify Legging. These leggings are made from custom-sourced Italian yarn fibers and offer an irresistibly silky, smooth feel. The full-interlock knit construction forms a dense, seamless fabric that retains breathability. With increased elasticity, they provide unmatched compression, shape retention, and flexibility, syncing perfectly with your movements. The seam work enhances your physique, giving support and durability. Designed to accentuate curves, the Amplify leggings feature a high waist, a 3-tiered tapered waistband, and a back scrunch seam detail. The leg and glute contouring panels further enhance your figure, making these leggings a great addition to your athletic wardrobe. To top it all off they're available in 30 amazing colors!
Experience ultimate comfort and style with the Harmony Ruched Crossover Legging. This classic legging features an ultra-comfortable crossover waistband and silhouette-defining ruching in the back, creating a flattering look. Crafted from post-consumer recycled plastic, 84% RPET, and 16% spandex, these leggings are a testament to sustainable fashion. The print adds a touch of old-world class to elevate your aesthetic, making these leggings versatile for pairing with light linens, denim, or dressing up to the nines. The leggings offer a soft, breathable, quick-drying, odor-resistant, and four-way stretch fabric. They're made from 26.86 recycled bottles, fitting true to size for a blend of environmental consciousness and stylish comfort.
DREAMOON's v crossover leggings offer an intimate, comfortable fit that stays in place. Made from over 25% recycled materials, these leggings provide a 4-way stretch, no-pilling, and see-through protection, ideal for the gym, yoga, or daily wear. Their butt-lifting design enhances your figure, and the high waist offers excellent tummy control. The leggings feature a unique four-bar design and two convenient pockets for your cell phone. With DREAMOON, experience the seamless blend of fashion, function, and sustainability in your athletic wear.
Cosmolle's AirWear High-Waist Legging takes eco-friendliness to new heights. Made from recycled nylon, this buttery soft, moisture-wicking fabric ensures comfort and breathability during your workouts. With a unique ruched seam for a natural butt-lift and edge-bonded panels for added comfort, these leggings come in sizes XS to 3X. Cosmolle also redefines self-care with their collagen-infused bras and underwear. Plus they stand by the quality of their products, offering a 60-day fit guarantee for free exchanges and returns.
Experience unparalleled comfort with the Belleza Cloudy 7/8 Legging, designed for yoga and beyond. Composed of 77% Nylon and 23% Spandex, these leggings offer a non-see-through, cloudy fabric that feels as soft as butter. Their high waist and 7/8 length provide a flattering fit for any activity, whether it's yoga, a picnic, or a day at work. The leggings' unique butt-lifting design enhances your figure, showcasing graceful hip lines. The leggings also feature a reflective logo for visibility during nighttime activities. With the Belleza Cloudy 7/8 Legging, you'll feel like you're floating on a cloud throughout your day.
The Wiskii Buttery Seamless Legging is a testament to style meeting functionality. Crafted from top-quality NILIT® Nylon and LYCRA® Spandex, it offers unmatched softness and 4-way stretch, hugging your body like a glove. Its unique design features eyelet detailing and shading contouring patterns, enhancing your natural curves while providing moisture-wicking comfort. The high-rise design, coupled with a supportive ribbed waistband, ensures a flattering fit for all your fitness pursuits. Ideal for athleisure enthusiasts, these leggings deliver a chic, comfortable, and performance-ready experience.
These leggings are sporty on the outside, soft on the inside, and designed for the dynamic needs of motherhood. These leggings feature on-trend active rib detailing, offering a never-see-through and super squat-proof design. A high waist and full-length leg promise comfort and style throughout pregnancy and beyond. Perfect for a grocery store run or a treadmill run, these leggings feature a soft, smooth knit inside, ensuring no harsh lines on your legs or belly. They're made with non-slip, thick fabric that's soft enough to stretch and shrink with you through different stages of motherhood. Pair them with the matching top or jacket for a complete look.
This legging is the talk of the town, celebrated for its curve-enhancing design. Made from incredibly soft Spacedye fabric, these active leggings feature an overlapped waistband that sits naturally at the waist. As a fan favorite and bestseller, these midi leggings flatter all body shapes and are versatile enough to work out or relax. They also make a perfect travel companion. Pair them with the matching crop tank for a complete look. Designed and assembled in the USA, these leggings undergo rigorous wear testing to ensure the best fit in every size.
Step into the world of luxury with the Emerald Luxe Legging, a blend of elegance and comfort. These medium compression heavyweight leggings offer a high rise, subtle matte sheen, and ultra-soft stretch, making them a perfect mix of stylish dress pant and cozy leggings for lazy days. Designed for work and play, the Luxe leggings provide an ultra-soft feel, a plush heavyweight comfort, and a subtle sheen for a luxurious look. These leggings are sustainable and chic, constructed from 77% recycled plastic bottles (RPET) and 23% spandex. The fabric is moisture-wicking, soft and provides a four-way stretch designed to mold to your body. The leggings also come with two small front waistband pockets and one back pocket for essential items.
Ideal for yoga or studio practice, the Ultra High Rise Elation 7/8 Tight offers exceptional comfort and support. Made from Powervita™ fabric, these tights provide a buttery-soft feel that hugs your body gently. The three-layer waistband with a mesh inner lining ensures a streamlined and supportive fit, while the absence of side seams allows for distraction-free practice. A back drop-in pocket provides space for essentials. The Nylon/Lycra material wicks sweat away, is breathable, and dries quickly, ensuring ultimate comfort. These tights are rated UPF 50+ for excellent protection, offer compression support, and feature a fitted, ultra-high-rise waistband for an enhanced silhouette.
The Year of Ours Veronica Ribbed Legging redefines athletic wear with a fun flare. Known for their detailed silhouettes, Year of Ours has expertly designed these leggings with a cross-v waistband feature available in multiple materials. The design perfectly balances compression, flexibility, and stretch, making them suitable for fitness classes or athleisure needs. The leggings are true to size, ensuring an excellent fit. With Year of Ours Veronica Ribbed Legging, you can experience the perfect blend of style and function in your athletic wardrobe.
$125 at SculptHouse
Seamless athletic leggings truly provide the perfect fusion of style, comfort, and functionality. These leggings bring a versatile edge to your athletic wardrobe, ideal for everything from high-intensity workouts to relaxed yoga sessions or even day-to-day errands. With features ranging from high-rise waistbands and compression fit moisture-wicking materials, finding the perfect pair to suit your specific needs is easier than ever. Investing in high-quality athletic gear isn't just a purchase. It's a commitment to a healthier, more active lifestyle. Enjoy the journey of finding your perfect fit and happy shopping!
A woman is upset with her husband and wants to leave him.
There are a few big reasons why 70% of divorces in the United States among heterosexual couples are filed by women. Women have more economic opportunities than in decades past and are better positioned to care for themselves and their children without a husband’s income.
Another big reason is that even though the world has become much more egalitarian than in the past, women still bear the brunt of most of the emotional labor in the home. Gilza Fort-Martinez, a Florida, US-based licensed couples’ therapist, told the BBC that men are socialized to have lower emotional intelligence than women, leaving their wives to do most of the emotional labor.
Secondly, studies show that women still do most of the domestic work in the home, so many are pulling double duty for their households.
A TikTokker with two children (@thesoontobeexwife) shared why she decided to leave her husband of two decades and her story recounts a common theme: She did all the work and her husband did little but complain.
The video, entitled “Why women leave,” has received over 2 million views.
Y’all I laughed when I realized he truly does treat me better now then when he was trying to be in a marriage with me. How is this better?? How did I ever think before was ok?? #toxicrelationship #divorce #mentalloadofmotherhood #divorcetok #divorceisanoption #chooseyou #mentalhealth #mentalload #fyp #mentalload #emotionallabor
“So for the men out there who watch this, which frankly I kind of hope there aren’t any, you have an idea maybe what not to do,” she starts the video. “Yesterday, I go to work all day, go pick up one kid from school, go grocery shopping, go pick up the other kid from school, come home. Kids need a snack–make the snack. Kids want to play outside – we play outside.”
Her husband then comes home after attending a volunteer program, which she didn’t want him to join, and the self-centeredness begins. “So he gets home, he eats the entire carton of blueberries I just purchased for the children’s lunch and asks me what’s for dinner. I tell him I don’t know because the kids had a late snack and they’re not hungry yet,” she says in the video.
She then explains how the last time he cooked, which was a rare event, he nearly punched a hole in the wall because he forgot an ingredient. Their previous home had multiple holes in the walls. Dr. Gail Saltz, a psychiatrist and host of the Power of Different podcast, says that when punch walls it’s a sign that they haven’t “learned to deal with anger in a reasonable way.”
“Anyway, finally one kid is hungry,” the TikTokker continues. “So I offered to make pancakes because they’re quick and easy and it’s late. He sees the pancake batter and sees that there’s wheat flour in it and starts complaining. Says he won’t eat them. Now I am a grown adult making pancakes for my children who I am trying to feed nutritionally balanced meals. So yes, there’s wheat flour in the pancake mix.”
Then her husband says he’s not doing the dishes because he didn’t eat any pancakes. “Friends, the only thing this man does around this house is dishes occasionally. If I cook, he usually does the dishes. I cook most nights. But here’s the thing. That’s all he does. I do everything else. Everything. Everything.”
She then listed all of the household duties she handles.
“I cook, I clean the bathrooms, I make the lunches, I make the breakfasts, I mow the lawn, I do kids’ bedtime. I literally do everything and he does dishes once a day, maybe,” she says.
I HAVE OFFICIALLY FILED FOR DIVORCE 🎉 #divorce #divorcetok #toxicrelationship #divorceisanoption #fyp #mentalhealth #chooseyou #iamenough #iwillnotbeafraid #mentalloadofmotherhood #emotionallabor
The video received over 8700 comments and most of them were words of support for the TikTokker who would go on to file for divorce from her husband.
"The amount of women I’ve heard say that their male partners are only teaching how to be completely independent of them, theirs going to be so many lonely men out there," Gwen wrote. "I was married to someone just like this for over 35 years. You will be so happy when you get away from him," BeckyButters wrote.
"The way you will no longer be walking on eggshells in your own home is an amazing feeling. You got this!" Barf Simpson added.
Ring doorbell video captures what it's like to be the default parent.
Kids, man. I'm not sure of the scientific way audacity is distributed, but kids have a lot of it and somehow make it cute. That audacity overload is especially interesting when you're the default parent—you know, the parent kids go to for literally everything as if there's not another fully capable adult in the house. Chances are if your children haven't sought you out while you were taking a shower so you could open up a pack of fruit snacks, then you're not the default parental unit.
One parent captured exactly what it's like to be the default parent and shared it to TikTok, where the video has over 4 million views. Toniann Marchese went on a quick grocery run and *gasp* did not inform her children. Don't you fret, they're modern kids who know how to use modern means to get much-needed answers when mom is nowhere to be found. They went outside and rang the doorbell.
Back when we were children, this would've done nothing but make the dogs bark, but for Marchese's kids, who are 3 and 6 years old, it's as good as a phone call.
You may be questioning why this mom left her two young children home alone. She didn't. Their father was home, likely wondering why the children were playing so quietly. But. He. Was. Right. There. And the kids still bypassed him to talk to their mom through the Ring doorbell camera. It was pressing business, after all.
Fitness coach and child with cerebral palsy inspire each other.
Everybody needs someone who can relate to them; it's one of the things that connects the human experience. For a 5-year-old New Jersey girl named Colbie Durborow, that connection came just in time. Colbie has been noticing people staring at her lately as she gets around using leg braces, a walker and sometimes a wheelchair, and she told her mom that she doesn't like it when people stare.
Colbie was born 17 weeks early and has cerebral palsy (CP), a group of disorders that affect balance, mobility and posture, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Her mom connected with former CrossFit trainer Steph Roach on Instagram, and the two became friends.
Roach also has CP and uses a wheelchair, but she defied the expectations of others by becoming a fitness coach, CrossFit instructor and author.
"When I saw Colbie and I saw the way that Amanda was guiding Colbie through life, it was just like we were meant to be friends," Roach explained to CBS Mornings.
The two women and Colbie got to know each other online, and before long, Roach was acting as a mentor for the little girl. They were all finally able to meet in January, and the author got to teach Colbie how to navigate some uncomfortable situations.
"Colbie realizes that people are starting to look at her and see her maybe a little bit differently, so we've had some big conversations about how that might make her feel," Roach said.
She went on to encourage the little girl that it's OK to tell people that she doesn't like it when they stare and to offer to answer questions people may have. The exchange was very sweet. Roach later admitted that she thought that Colbie could do anything, and said through tears that if she could go back to her 5-year-old self, she would tell her to be proud of herself.
It's clear that these two have developed a special bond through their connection with CP. Thanks to having Roach in her life, Colbie is learning that she can do things that exceed expectations. You can watch their adorable bond below:
The expectation to put on an air of happy, fun, pleasant nonconfrontation through baring teeth, otherwise known as smiling, is something many, if not most, women know very well. What’s more, this pressure is often introduced to women at a very early age.
And obviously, while there’s nothing inherently wrong with naturally being a happy, smiling person, issues arise when kids are taught that being themselves, just as they are, isn’t acceptable.
That’s why people are so impressed with North Carolina-based photographer Brooke Light’s (@bdlighted on TikTok) hands-off approach when it comes to taking pictures of young girls.
Her philosophy is simple, but oh so poignant: Allow girls to show up, take up space, and perhaps most importantly, not smile if they don’t want to.
Light posted a video showing some of her recent portraits, and truly, the work speaks for itself. Each of the girls’ distinct, unique personalities shine in these black-and-white images. Plus the lighting is moody and artsy and cool as hell. So much better than a forced, cheesy, smiling pic.