quiet hearts

i took photos last night.  not of everything.

as a photographer, i document life.  real life.
as a writer, i document life.  real life.

my posts are not excluded to the fake reality of the perfect life.

i fought with my conscience yesterday evening.  i couldn't decide whether to cross that line, until Jordanna wanted to take Annabelle outside for fresh air.  for the hour that we were visiting until Annabelle breathed her last, she kept talking about bringing her outside to feel and breathe the air.

we brought a wheelchair for her to ensure her safety while holding Annabelle.  we all followed her outside to the roof patio.  she sat outlooking the trees and sky, just behind the patio's railing.  after about 10 minutes, i took out my camera.

i knew there was the possibility that someone might stop me, but i decided to take the chance.

though this moment in time shook us with tears and clenched our aching hearts, though this moment would be something people would say "this is not a moment to be remembered..." i have to disagree.

i disagree.

and you are welcome to hold your opposing position if you do not feel the same.
i respect and understand where you stand.

i asked her permission, though i knew her answer might have been clouded.
she said "i don't know..."

i told her i would take a few and she could decide later whether or not she wanted them.
if she wishes, i will delete them from all existence.

this moment, in its deafening silence and echoes of abandon, was still a beautiful moment.

all her family was outside, in the background, sitting, waiting, and sharing the burden.  in her greatest time of need, Jon was by her side reminding her that Annabelle lived beyond her 20 minute life expectancy and that she was now at peace and no longer suffering from seizures or any other pain she may have endured throughout her short life.

her sister Nicole arrived and ran out to embrace Jordanna, comfort her and bear the burden of heartbreak.

perhaps this is still perverse to some of you.  i can understand.

the reason why i made the decision to take photos and have them as an option, is because i wish there were photos from the day my dad passed and from his funeral.  because, although they were the saddest days of my life, they were still very monumental moments that deserved to be remembered...

i wish there were photos of all my relatives that gathered in our home for numerous evenings in prayer.  filling our home to full capacity, to let us know we were not alone.  i wish there was a photo to show the sea of people that came to support our family.  i wish i had a photo of my auntie cathy, my mom's cousin, who took me in her arms at the funeral and held me so hard, knowing well the pain i was going through as she had also suffered the loss of her father at a young age.  a moment of total despair in joint heartbreak and yet still a moment of love, still a moment that i have treasured all these years and that i know i will always treasure for the rest of my life.

because the sad moments in life change who we are.  they change our lives forever.  it is often the darkest times in our life that lift us up, that change our perspective, and offer us the chance to breakthrough our old skin and live life in the sun and dance in the rain.  it changes the taste of the air and clarifies the heart and mind.  these dark moments inspire goodness and greatness.  the pain of losing someone so dear to you has the power to wake you up and reevaluate the important things and the important people in your life.   

in losing a life, you are reminded of how precious it is...  how precious YOUR own life is.  

in losing a life, it is almost as if your own life is renewed.  you are given a renewed sense of gratitude for each breath from your loved ones as well as your own.  whether or not you believe in a God or many gods or have your own spiritual set of ways, nobody knows when they will leave this earth.  there is no guarantee of how long we will get to be here.
in losing a life, you find the courage to live your own to its fullest, as if your loved one is now living vicariously through you.  every moment counts.  every moment can be beautiful. 

Jordanna has given permission to share these photos


  1. I think this is beautiful. I truly do. I think you had a very unique privilege to be able to be present at, and capture the giving of life and the taking away and some beautiful moments in between. Some of fullest moments in life are those that are held in tension. Our love to Jordanna and Jon and your whole family. Blessings,


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