01 April 2021

From Darkness into Light...

From Darkness to Light : Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden Vernon Chalmers Photography Copyright
“I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness because it shows me the stars.” – Og Mandino

At Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, Cape Town (to turn sadness in happy moments - for being in the moment)

It was with eager anticipation that I prepared my camera bag an early morning photography session at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden. I have not been there in more than a year - and at the time was left with sad memories of the most special person / and keen photographer I have ever known (my biggest love) - which I have 'emotionally lost' soon after our last visit to Kirstenbosch. 

She (the most beautiful person ever in my life - at the time) is gone, the cognitive dissonance is dissipating, but the good / bad memories kept on lingering. I knew I had to go back to Kirstenbosch with real friends (with gratitude) to let the biggest Love in my live go - and I did so on Friday.

Update: Grieving the Loss of my Friend, Joseph Inns (is not the person described here)

In "Conversations with God", Neale Walsch writes something to this effect, what God said "When you meet your biggest Love, you will meet your biggest Fear". I grappled with this for the past 12 months. I became Fear.... and this was so profoundly true - in every breath I took. It took me months and months of working through personal conditioning efforts of (my own) neuroplasticity regimes to 're-wire' my brain for overcoming this particular Fear.

On this glorious and fresh sunny Friday morning I went back to Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden with one of my photography club friends, Karen Donaldson, (a dear friend of mine for many years and also a friend of my best friend, Joseph Inns, who is now very ill - I've never been to Kirstenbosch with either of them).

I had one of the very best mornings ever at Kirstenbosch, free to roam the gardens and to think about love, life and to share the crispness of the beautiful morning with a real friend.

Blessed with God's Gifts of nature and real, true and good people in my life.

I've had the greatest support over the last 6 - 8 months to get my mojo as photographer and person back. It will be unfair to identify any individual in my healing, but you know who you are. Some of of you I unfriended from Facebook, because any reminders of her which was hurting me to the core, was just to challenging at times. I will never forget you, your words, your wisdom, to carry me back into the true light of life and photography.

An for a very special lady: you gave me 'the little gold nuggets' to rebuild my life. You've listened to me for hour after hour here in my Blu-C studio. I'm forever grateful for your professionalism, wisdom, patience, love and care.

Update: 25 August 2021
Its been a year since I walked away and removed myself from this toxic relationship. I have certainly gained a fair amount of behavioural knowledge and understanding during this soul-searching journey. It will still require some processing to finally let this relationship slide completely into the past. The flashbacks and feeling of disappointment still lingers, but I have to steer the course towards a life without reminding myself of the constant misery and sadness that consumed my being.

I have been back to Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden quite a few times for small bird and flower since writing this post earlier in 2021. It is definably becoming easier to go back. I have had some wonderful photography mornings there - images can be viewed here, here and here.

Kirstenbosch is now also included as one of my Vernon Chalmers Photography Bird and Flower Training venues.

Hout Bay Harbour African Art & Textiles - For Joseph Inns

Thoughts on Loss: Love vs Fear

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