Hiya my beautiful brown eyed boy. I’ve just enrolled in a free 4 week online course called ‘illuminate – lighting the path to photographic healing….’ guided by a talented photo mum & mentor Beryl Ayn Young. I will be exploring how photography can help deal with the all the emotions by taking photos that capture the grief from you not being here on earth with us all. The first task is to write you a letter so this is it x I’ve just got back from a cancer council all day lovely high tea put on by Leanne MacKay, the lady who put together your fundraising trivia night and she pulled off another great successful day to raise money for cancer research a subject close to our hearts x it’s a bit chilly now as it nearly winter in Australia but we haven’t got the heaters out yet, so I’m chilling on the lounge with a blanket over my legs as I write this on my iPad. I turned on the tv and guess what’s on, the movie ‘Blended.’ It must have been a sign that you’ve been on my mind a lot today & everyday & night in my dreams. I just heard Adam Sandler tell his little girl ‘the thing I miss about her (his wife) is telling her how much I loves her’ and it bought tears to my eyes. Can’t wait till I hear our song from this movie ‘it’s nice to be alive.’ Oh how I wish you were ‘alive.’ But you will always be ‘alive’ in me.
For the first task of this course was taking self portraits. I have chosen to use your camera. Hope this is ok? I know it was your pride and joy but I will take good care of it and try and learn how to use it to take some beautiful shots (not necessarily of me) but the scenery and atmosphere that is captured in the shot. With the first photography assignment I have to explore self portrait – thanks to your sister Rachel she captured what I will share today (although they are far from glamour shots – wrinkles and all) The first picture I took was standing in the bath with the vanity mirror door open so I could catch my reflection with your camera in the shot. You loved a deep bath – all of your 6ft 2 frame soaking in the bubbles. I hated how the disease robbed you of the simple pleasures of soaking in the tub.
The second photo was me sitting in your cute little car that sits on the roadside missing you just as much as all of us. We can’t bare the thought of getting rid of it as its a part of who you were, all the imperfections for all to see (a broken window, a sunken in seat, spare change near the radio, McDonald’s wrappers on the floor) just how you faced your fight with Ewing’s Sarcoma. The spiders have taken up residence in your side mirrors, and this you would have hated as you always looked like a ninja warrior when you walked into a web. Luckily we still have your YouTube movies ‘Stuck’ and the sequel ‘Stuck 2’ to watch, featuring your little purple car.
The third photo was me having a swing at the park across the road from our house. The very swing that you videoed eerily swinging in the darkness and used in your YouTube teaser trailer called ‘Abandoned’ that you made with your cousin Luke. But this time there was someone in your swing, it was me with my feet reaching for the Heavens, to you.
The fourth photo was me at Warilla beach. It felt right to take a picture of the beach as you are now part of the sea – my Pisces water sign baby. ‘Mambo no 5’ (photo number 5) was taken with our doggies ‘Ozzy and Axl.’ You’d love to sit outside by the pool and trees in our backyard with our beloved pooches who’d repay they’re love in big wet kisses. I have tried to match my photos of the week with some of yours from your albums that carry across the same theme – bath, car, swing, beach and wet doggy kisses. Connected in a sense…
The hardest thing of looking at these photos is coming to the realisation that we will never be able to take anymore precious moments with you doing all the things you loved in life. What we have is what we’ve got, there will be no more. But I will always think of you as I press the button on the camera. Like the little note that we left for you as a parting gift – ‘capturing the chaos and creativity in Heaven through the lens of his camera.’ I hope you are proud as I capture the world through your eyes through the lens of your camera and see what I see.
‘Snapshots are stills of life in motion….capturing moments in time….’ Wish we had more time as it wasn’t meant to be this way. Children (I know you technically not a child at 20 years of age, but you are still my baby) aren’t meant to go before parents its against natural order. Till we meet again – I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living, my baby you’ll be.
I just heard our song on the movie x the one you took your last breath to 😦 yes it’s nice to be alive – but not without you. It just hurts so much.
Stay golden pony boy (a line from the movie ‘The secret life of Walter Mitty’)
Love forever and always – mum
‘Cheese’ and smile like you always used to say when you took a picture when you were little x