Did you ever notice when you look at a photo of someone you know well, if you know the context a little bit- the people they were with- you can tell who took it? When I got the photos on Dan’s iPhone back from overseas, I could tell who (which of the friends/bandmates on tour) had taken each photo of him by the way he was smiling and looking at the camera.
And so…I too look a certain way in all of the photos you took of me over the years. I can tell you’re behind the lens by the way I look at the camera. I can also tell because you took photos of me as if I was artwork. You were always telling me you had to take a photo of me just then or in that light. So in many of the photos, I’m not posing or even looking at the camera- but I can still see myself through your unique view.
I realize that the girl behind that lens is now dead and gone. The reality is we must say goodbye to who we were in order to become who we will now be. She can never reappear- the one you alone saw and knew- the lens itself is gone. So, I decided to search through for some of those photos (not because I’m vain- it goes against my instinct to post photos of myself) to remember her one more time how you saw her and in turn, shaped her. I will miss her. Thank you for seeing her the way you did.
This breaks my heart, Julia. It breaks my heart because I understand just what you mean. You have such strength–such unimaginable strength.