August 31, 2013 was the last time I held my camera. It was also the day that my mother passed away while I was sitting next to her bed. I’m not sure when I took my camera bag and placed it behind a chair in my bedroom, but thats where it was when Pearl “Naturalhairdeva” Walker-Ali asked me about it today. I hadn’t really thought about it until that moment. I had to be very aware of my actions when I did it. I have to believe that I had a good reason for placing the one thing that has ignited my passion for the past three years behind a chair where it could not be seen. Almost in a place where it could be out of sight and out of mind.
Photography is my creative outlet, my stress relief, and my passion. For the past three years, I have shot more than I even care to admit to. I role play with photography. I am the stylist, I have been the hair stylist, have made dresses with pins and belts, I have done make-up (YIKES), I have been the creative director, the assistant, and anything else that I felt needed to the done to achieve what I saw in my head. Photography is food. Photography is breathing. Photography is….my LIGHT.
Back to my conversation with Pearl….
When talking with a more mature Queen, I am always ready for the knowledge and love that they are eager to share and teach. Today was a huge lesson for me. My grief doesn’t have a time limit. This I know, but because I feel that I can’t pick up my camera to the point that I hid it says a lot to me. Pearl suggested that if I couldn’t touch the camera that I ask my daughter to touch it first. She instructed me to have Kyla to place my camera next to a picture of my mother and allow time to heal and I would be drawn to the camera again. Profound? Yes!!! Where did this come from? Why did she tell me to do this? How does she know that this practice will help me? It had to come from a place deep in history. A place with ancestral roots and spiritual roots. I asked Kyla to take my camera bag into the spare bedroom and place my mothers picture on top of the bag. For some reason anxiety that I had no clue was there seemed to ease. I exhaled.
I’m not really sure when I will be drawn back to my cameras, but I am sure that while I’m healing my mother is protecting my passion for photography and building a cocoon of love on it until I’m ready; Setting the stage for the perfect LIGHT!