A recent post in Kim Klassen’s blog got me thinking…about life, survival, the familiar. Tomorrow is my husband’s 65th birthday, a milestone day to be sure. But I’ve been calculating his days & years by an event that happened 8 months ago that took away the man I married and left in his place someone who I don’t know and can’t anticipate. His stroke, sudden, unexpected and life changing left me numb. To survive it I HAD to go on autopilot (the theme of that blog post I mentioned) just to make it through the days, then the weeks, then the months it has taken us to to get to this place. Today we’ll celebrate with family this milestone birthday with a special luncheon. We were prepared for it, had planned on it and then this morning when we awoke it was to a world filled with white. That means that some of the folks who were invited can’t come because of age and health…I was thinking of all this when I let my little Chihuahua out the back door for his thrice daily walk.
He ran down through the snow like a champ…did what was necessary and because his footsteps were clearly marked in the snow I thought I’d hold the door open wider so I could get a set of his returning paw prints. Even though the door was open completely he ran back through his previous steps, not deviating from his original path and that got me thinking. So I grabbed my iPhone and took some snaps of those paw prints…they had sparked a thought, a response to Kim’s Saturday post about autopilot. Just as my Chi runs on autopilot never deviating from his original path, I realized that it wasn’t until I picked up my camera that I was able to snap out of autopilot myself.
Not thinking about anything other than what is necessary in the moment saves us from unnecessary worry and keeps us sane enough to survive the event. But only running back and forth in our own footsteps keeps us from seeing the world around us. Yes, it is necessary for surviving the traumatic but if it becomes an every day way of dealing with life, we miss so much of what that life has to offer.
Kim doesn’t know, can’t know, the lives she has changed because of her journey. She touched my life deeply and snapped me out of that doom and gloom and everyday is the same, sleep and repeat. I don’t know the exact moment when I decided to commit myself fully to photography again but I know that it is Kim who makes it important in my life and gives me hope that I can survive anything as long as I allow myself to stop a moment and just be!