Every few months or so you meet someone who leaves a special mark in your heart. Well for me that was Heidi, we met at a PowerMatch event and found out that we were also members of a few other networking groups. I was hired shortly after that meeting to photograph her for the local magazine. The day I drove up to her home I remember feeling very welcomed, not only by her but her husband and 2 boys also just had a warmth about them. I quickly recognized this feeling to be one of friendship and love.
We went about our shoot and like every mom she wanted things to be perfect, she asked for special shots and said the same things every mom said, I never take a good photo. Which we all know to be a lie. ALL MOMS TAKE GREAT PHOTOS.
Today I am saddened to hear she lost her battle with depression and mental illness. Heidi was an advocate, a fighter, and someone who really worked hard every day to battle this fight. Mental illness is a beast, one that we judge because unlike cancer where we can often see the effects of, Mental Illness we often can’t. I grew up with family members that were dealing with mental illness and it’s not easy watching those closest to you suffer every day.
As a photographer, I will admit to a few things, I get hired to capture the good times and sometimes that may be just enough for the family or the person suffering. Sometimes as a photographer I feel guilty having these memories, memories of a person that is no longer here. I hate deleting them because for me it makes the reality of their death permanent. While I make every attempt to contact the family to ensure they have the images (at no cost) I still haven’t found a way to deal with that part of my business yet.
Heidi was a good mom and friend. She always made it a point to make time for me whenever we were at events. As a photographer, I capture special moments in the lives of my clients and I find often we become friends, as was the case with this beautiful Lady. She will be missed by many. Rest in peace friend.
If you need to talk please reach out. If you are reading this please consider me a friend and know you can ALWAYS email me, if not listed below are the number for the national suicide hotline in both English and SPANISH!
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
In English –1-800-273-8255
Author: Wanda Thomas
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