Not a photo a day – in a dark place

I’ve been reflecting on why I am sad most of the time. I don’t think it’s genetics because before I was injured I was a happy person, and even now I can feel happy at the smallest of things. But there is a blackness that envelops me a lot of the time.

I don’t think its caused by the big things like being doubly incontinent, and being paralysed, as they become givens after a few years of practice. No, I think the sadness has much more to do with the accumulative effect of all the little irritants that become associated with living with impairment like night bags leaking urine on the floor, hand controls breaking, bleeding when going to the toilet, banging oneself and only realising it when mirror checking my body, being stranded because of a tyres puncture or getting dogs shit on my hands when wheeling.

One way I try and deal with the constant pressure of managing this is not to be a sad git. I don’t like it and people around don’t either. Continued sadness pushes people way rather than bringing them close. So I try to accept what I can’t control and try and move beyond the shitty things in my life and get to a level of what Mazlow called Self Actualisation. However doing so is both a practical and psychological battle – especially when there is a cumulative effect of lots of little things going wrong like this week’s bag splitting and the hand controls breaking on top of the usual level of crap I deal with.

One tool in my arsenal has been to use photography and photographs as a means to self actualisation. I objectify many of the problems and irritants I face within photos and this allows me to recognise them and in some way deal with them so they don’t taint other aspects of my life. This extra photo is one such example. It may not look like much, but my intension is for it to be very very expressive of how I feel just now.

The digital image reflects my massive disappointment at not getting to the BSA Exhibition (link). This hit me more than I thought it would – probably because I imagine its the last thing I will do under the Open College of Arts brand. However today is a new day and that’s why the image does show some light – because there is always hope and positivity to be found in any circumstance and they often sit next to darkness and despair.

Does the image convey any of what I intended in its making to you, or does it say something else?


About Pete

South Londoner struggling with life, art and photography.
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2 Responses to Not a photo a day – in a dark place

  1. Tanya says:

    This image says “hurt” to me. I think age has a lot to do with sadness, chunks of your soul get taken away when people die or move away, when your living situation changes and as health and wealth issues arise. You never really get that 100% carefree, selfish, happy of your youth back again. But we get moments and as long as we can still embrace those moments with wild abandon we can overcome the rest 🙂 Here’s to your next moment!


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