True friendship comes when the silence between two people is comfortable

seascape beach sunset cloud reflection pebble sand photofool

I have way too many things on my mind lately, but first thing first … I found out that one of my friends has been battling brain cancer for six years. All of these years that I know her, I never knew. I knew that she was going through some physical pains, but I never asked out of respect for her privacy. Last week, she decided to reveal her story via a rare self-portrait. I sat there for a while staring at her photo and remembering her comments on some of my photos …

We all take photographs and share them for different reasons. Some choose to communicate through their photographs when words are inadequate. Some instantly feel a connection with a photograph that resonates with their life experiences. I remember deleting one of her comments on one of my photos because the comment was so spot on, and I was not comfortable sharing that level of personal info out in the public view. I later renamed the photo and deleted a bunch of other very supportive comments out of respect for another person’s privacy. When I photograph a scene, I always attempt to inject my emotion into the shot. Some of my viewers immediately get what I am saying through my photographs just because we share common life experiences that influence how we perceive the world around us. Although some of my good friends don’t leave comment, I know that they know that I know we know what we are saying to each other without saying anything. David Tyson Gentry’s quote that I use for the title of this shot says it best, “True friendship comes when the silence between two people is comfortable”.

Back to the topic of terminal illness, I personally see many around me going through the struggles. Many choose to fight alone because they don’t want to burden their love ones. All I can do is to stand back in the distance and say, “I’m here; I see you and I feel your struggles.” Sometimes, that means more than anything else to them. So to my friend, Laurie (or some of you in the Flickrverse might know her as fouramjava) and to others who are fighting for your survival, this photo is for you. I’m here, and your friends are here for you. You stay strong.

My best friend gave me the best advice
He said each days a gift and not a given right
Leave no stone unturned
Leave your fears behind
And try to take the path less traveled by
That first step you take is the longest stride

If today was your last day
If tomorrow was too late
Could you say goodbye to yesterday
Would you live each moment like your last
Leave old pictures in the past …

— If Today Was Your Last Day lyrics by Nickelback