The past few weeks have been difficult. I had my share of life challenges so far but this was beyond anything I could imagine. I am using the past tense although I know it is not over yet. About a month ago, a decision to split for Anne-Marie and I was taken after half a life of of being together. It wasn’t the decision that hit me so much like a brick but the incidence this can potentially have on the kids. I have always kept the kids in mind for the past 15 years, ever since Simon was born. A month ago I started to wonder what their future would look like. I know, they are not the 1st kids to go through such life changes but when something such as this happens, all you care about is how THEY will go through it.
For the past month, nothing else mattered. Everything got put aside, everything became secondary. Nothing had importance anymore so I could not make sense of what my “going through it” would look like. My mind went blank at times although thoughts sounded like hundreds of voices were trying to make sense of it all. I shut down for a few days, staring at the spinning ceiling fan in my bedroom. At one point, I looked at my camera bag and thought I did not need it anymore. I tried pulling the camera out, thinking I might be able to frame some dark mooded images out of what was left up there but in vain. These images were processed using the format card option in the camera menu.
I had a lot of support through this. I had many people reaching out to me, offering ears and shoulders. Some others offered more, much more, more they can ever imagine. The biggest kick in the butt I got was when my son asked me to sort of go back to my “normal” self and when my daughter asked me if she could come with me on my next photoshoot, that was the cue.
I looked back at the shoots I had to cancel through that process. I started booking again thinking I had it. It was time to sit back on that bike and stop worrying about those bruised knees. There was rain in the forecast. I almost got tempted to cancel but decided to go through with it. Worst case, we would be shooting in the rain; it did not matter to me at this point. At 7:00am, I woke up Enya and asked her if she wanted to come along. We packed the bags and headed to meet Anna-Maria.
Having been in the cadets, Anna-Maria was able to engage with Enya on the subject. My daughter is in the naval cadets and surprisingly engaged in the discussion. Enya is rather like I was at her age; don’t talk to me and I will be fine with that. I guess Anna-Maria hit a cord. We parked next to the water shore and started slow. I fell out of tune, the park we were in was not really talking to me. I looked at the water shore but Anna-Maria had done a shoot near that spot earlier in the water and I wanted to avoid being influenced by that. We got to the shore and she pointed out the chair her friends and she placed not so far from there. We walked on the pebbled beach toward that spot. The chair was perfect. We did not move it. That was the spot and images came back in my head. Every once in a while, I would let Enya shoot, providing her with the camera settings needed (because I will not let her shoot on anything else than manual). It felt good to see her shooting. My sister was the literature oriented one back when we were kids; my brother was the scientist. I was more of the dreamer. I never followed that though. I got into computer science looking for the additional sense of security this would be providing for my future and the one for my family. Seeing Enya with a camera up her face at age 10, knowing she would like to earn a living playing the music makes me think someone might one day pick up what I left behind when I became an adult, way too early in my life. Faith dropped another one like me down here and I know what my role is now. If she wants to be a dreamer, she will be one and I will make damn sure she keeps dreaming.
The shoot took about an hour. Might be one of my quickest but I knew I had the needed photos. All you really need is one that shines above the others. It gave me the confidence that I am in a good place right now. The kids will be alright, things will get better, life will carry on. I guess I will always be back; I owe that to the kids.