Sunset over the California desert, with highway signs in the distance (Miranda Hernandez)
Sunset over the California desert (Miranda Hernandez)

1 Feb 2018 – Photos

Black and White Photos and White Picket Fences

In the black-and-white photos, he looks like he’s sleeping. Photos are difficult; they don’t tell the whole story.

After the announcement, I received messages from obscure acquaintances. I realized I had joined this silent club. The landscape is different here. Some things are even better, but never enough.

I put photos up at work. I think that a year ago this would have felt wrong. Someone asked a colleague why I was so morbid. I find grace in the fact that she doesn’t understand.

I wanted the suburbs — the white picket fences; the black and white photos where nobody dies. I live in the desert. The colors are brighter here. The beauty is messy, but so much more real.

And here is the fallacy, for none of it’s worth it. It’s like hearing, “You’re strong,” when I don’t have a choice.

The desert has beauty because of the missing. The flowers are highlights, relieving the sand. The people are water, more deep than I understood. And all of it’s wasted. I cling to my photos.

Related Posts:

Topics Page: Death Positivity
Topics Page: People & Relationships
Resources Blog for Resources After Loss: Ways to Honor Your Child

Posts written in response to prompts from Megan Devine’s Refuge in Grief writing program.
Return to Write Your Grief Homepage

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