A Lantern in the Darkness

My friend asked me to photographer her how I see her.  She asked me to create an image without her telling me or asking me for how she wanted to see herself… but as I imagine her.

She is a beautiful light who has been trudging through darkness for the last year and a half.  Her husband died.  He was her soulmate and the person that meant the world to her for many years.  As smart and funny and beautiful and positive as she is, there is a heavy burden that she feels each and every day that I can’t even begin to imagine.

So.  This is how I see her… a beacon of light in a dark storm.  Grounded and looking ahead even though it is hard.  And lonely.  And heartbreaking.  But there is beauty in that heartbreak.  She glows with love for him.  She is still here.  Holding a light here on earth for him.

She texts him sometimes, and I asked if I could add her words to my image, to make our photograph an expression of art.  An expression of her love and the bittersweet loneliness she bears every day for him.

An expression of Love.

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Lights Will Guide You Home

Recently, my husband died.  He is my best friend, my partner, my soul mate and love of my life.  We have been together for almost 30 years – all of my adult life.  When he left, he took my soul with him.  It is gone, as if it has been scooped out of my body with a melon-baller.  I know it will never come back.  I will never be the same.

Not in this life.

The other day I was on a flight and because I was flying west, the brilliant sunset lasted over three hours.  It was beautiful, but after a while it became sad and oppressive.  I realized, “this is my life without John.”  My life is over, just as the day is over, but yet it just goes on.  I never get to have the night of freedom with him.  My life is a perpetual twilight.   Maybe that is what the quiet hallowness of my soul means – the perpetual twilight of being neither alive nor dead.

But then, I wrote to him.

“Maybe if I can realize that you are still here with me, even if I can’t see of feel or touch you, and I decide to make something worthwhile of this life, no matter how sad and empty and lonely it is, I can turn it from a gloomy gray twilight into at least a beautiful sunset.”

So I will try to make something beautiful of this life .  I will try to be a light for him, wherever he is. I will look for his light to help me find my way.

Lights will guide us home.

 

~ Laura

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