A woman far more wise than I once said (and I may be paraphrasing slightly, it was a long time ago!): “the only stories we can totally truthfully tell are our own”. Now, you can pull that every which way depending on your own perspective, but she was a patient advocate speaking at a surgeons conference at the time and she used her own experience to extraordinary effect.
The storytellers among you – and I count myself as one – may already be debating the point in your heads, but I firmly believe the MOST powerful stories come from our own, and when we find the courage to tell them, even if only to ourselves, they can be life changing.
Most of you reading this will know of events in the four years before I came to Wiltshire, and the writing that became the foundation of The She Inside project. What may not have been so obvious – including to me – is the pivotal role photography played in my healing. SHE may have been the voice I gave to the story, but my camera and what I learned to create with it was ultimately the conduit from dark to light. And I do not say that lightly.
Dark and difficult times are never easy places to revisit for any of us – our minds have a natural tendency to move away from them as time passes because it’s healthy to do so, and life genuinely does go on. But SHE is my talisman, reminding me how far I’ve come, and how much life is to be loved, no matter what, every single day.
As I’ve said before: there is no single self, only moments of now when we are the sum of the moments that went before.
I have so much to thank Her for.