When I look at you, I see myself. If my eyes are unable to see you as my sister, it is because my own vision is blurred. And if that be so, then it is I who need you either because I do not understand who you are, my sister, or because I need you to help me understand who I am. // Lillian P. Benbow
Last week I shot with Jeanette, Quinn Moss. I don’t get asked to shoot a lot. Maybe I’m intimidating or maybe I come off as high-maintenance and bitchy. Hell, maybe I’m just not as cute as I think I am! So, when she reached out to me, I was hesitant to shoot. I’m not a model and I rarely enjoy the photoshoot process because I’m a perfectionist, I analyze everything, and after five good poses, I’m like “did you get what you needed?” At this point you’re probably going with my bitchy theory, I don’t blame you. But, when she spoke about the importance of investing in self and documenting one’s life, I packed up my bitchy boots and got on board.
As we nailed down details, we agreed to meet in Miami, which was perfect because Miami has always made me feel beautiful and brave. I asked about the concept because I really wanted to make sure I was able to deliver on the story she was trying to tell. See, the perfectionist in me was already rearing it’s ugly head. That’s when she told me that what she was really trying to capture was… me. She followed me on Instagram, liked my confidence and how I shared my struggles. She noticed that I carried a lot with me and she just wanted to capture my beauty and my pain. I didn’t know what to say. We go our whole lives trying to be seen. Wanting others to see us. Understand us. Appreciate us. Love us… as we are. It feels beautiful and overwhelming to be seen, for being no more than myself.
We shot on July 29th, the two year anniversary to my last miscarriage. And, I’d be lying if it wasn’t on my mind, has been on my mind… so very heavy on my heart. A hole unable to close. I don’t think anyone knew that I needed to escape, needed to be near the water, but I knew. And, as I wandered the property where we were shooting, I was drawn to this small, pale pink house. So delicate and calling to me.
As I stood on the porch, I felt the weight of all the ways I have been broken by this world… by my own body.
And, when I saw I these behind the scenes shots, I saw myself. Hurt, broken, disappointed, confused, yet strong, healing, fighting, surviving, beautiful, and seen.
6 thoughts on “See and Be Seen”
What a breathtakingly beautiful peice. It’s so raw and so honest. I always look forward to your IG and blog posts. I miscarried on July 27th at 9wks (last week) and I find myself wandering and just wishing that I still had this little cashew that was growing within me. As the aftereffect of pain starts to leave my body, I’m determined to love myself even more than I did before. It’s a healing process one must ensue.. Love + Light beautiful Kenya XO thank-you for continuing to share your voice. There is no doubt in my mind that it is a lift for many women and couples’ alike around the world
Kenya, Kenya, Kenya – such a beautiful post. Your words and spirit are forever healing. I became teary-eyed upon reading the initial quote, before I even clicked “read more.” I thought they were your words, but you put me on to another beautiful soul. And your words in rest of the post are a delight and as usual, exactly what I need to read. You are stunning internally and externally. Thank you.
Thank you for sharing. I love the initial quote, it explains so clearly something I did not even realize I was trying to say for so long. Your introspective words and photographs are such an inspiration. Again, thank you.
You are so Inspiring? I have suffered three miscarriages therefore I know very well the pain that you speak of. I feel it every year when the day rolls around and turns my brain into a fury of thought. The what ifs…thank you for having the courage to share your pain. You are an amazingly beautiful being!
I miscarried my 21 week old baby girl a couple days ago and it’s something I’d never thought I’d experience in my life. I’ve been following your page for awhile now. As I try to piece together why it happened, I’m also eagerly trying to find sources of reassurance that I’ll be okay somewhere down the line in the future. My thoughts faintly reminded me of reading this post awhile ago and I raced here. Reminding me that I’m not alone in this, and that this traumatic experience is survivable… it’s doable. I appreciated it then because of the courage it took to share but I feel it even more now. Thank you for sharing your experience and being my source of reassurance during my dark hour.
I’m so vey sorry for your loss. You are not alone at all & I do believe that one day you will be ok. Not today, and that’s ok. On IG, look up the hashtags #Iam1in4 #whathealsyou #captureyourgrief and check out @carlymariedudley feed. I think you will find some comfort there. Keep a journal & talk to someone. All the best💚 xok