Monday, August 29, 2011
The Shadow Of Others
I was my mother’s son, her first child, and in many ways coddled by her overprotective nature. My mother being a mousy slim hipped thing that looked like Ingrid Bergman dwelt in her own life of fear, being abandoned as a child, becoming co-dependant on every moment of her own existence. She hung on tight to those of us around her, me especially tight, that much of my youth I felt suffocated from her immense grip. I know until the day she died I was one of the most precious things to come into her existence. We learn from our parents and inherit their tendencies and I too became co-dependent on others unable to survive on my own.
Looking into this image of some thirty-two years ago, I see no trances of the reverie of my awkwardness in this image. All I see now is a beautiful boy with soft brown curly hair, a contented smile in my mouth moving up into the warmth my deep dark eyes. I really began to question, was this really me? I don’t remember being so handsome, so confident, so self-assured. Was I? How is it that the physical self can be so different from the emotional self? For some reason I always looked to my brother, and could only recognize those beautiful traits in him and could somehow never get beyond it to gaze upon myself.
Through the process of this project, my life has begun to open as I face all the things that haunt my past. Perhaps it is now time to open all those old journals and see what they will reveal. Perhaps my life is not at all the way I perceived it. I have a friend who is now asking me to look into the mirror and see all those positive things about myself that I can’t seem to or perhaps have never seen within myself before. I now think, he is right, this is the time. I realize now that most of my life has been dwelling in the shadows of others. In theater I dwelled in the darkness, behind the scenes. I have been in domineering co-dependent relationships, and now I linger in the shadows of other photographers I fantasize about emulating or becoming. I expect to succeed in a world filled with so many people wanting to do what I do, now even with their cell phones, it’s becoming hard to compete. I am beginning to see that perhaps the only thing original that I really have to offer, that is different, is myself, at this moment. This has defiantly been the year to step out of the shadows and reveal myself.
I think one of the things I fear the most is facing myself, and actually looking at what lies in front of mirror.
VIEW FULL IMAGE: Chad #218