The day I met Justin Porter I knew my life would be separated in to two parts: before Justin and after Justin. Then as we grew together as a couple, I grew farther and farther away from who I had been before I met him. It was a little scary sometimes, to feel so distant from the “before” person but louder than the fear of being an unknown, new person was the excitement that this new person was so much better. In the light of a healthy relationship with Justin, bad relationships of all sorts were cast aside. Where anxiety had once kept me paralyzed in a conflict, I was now speaking my mind with confidence. Not to mention the wardrobe upgrade and self-esteem that happens when you feel gorgeous from the inside to the outside.
The day of my car accident my life was separated in to two parts: before the car accident and after the car accident. As these last three months have progressed the physical changes are obvious: not walking, to walking a few steps with a walker, to walking without the walker, to shopping for my own groceries. From an arm in a cast, to a softer cast, to no cast, to carrying those grocery bags to the car. What has surprised me recently is that the more “back to normal” I feel physically the more not back to normal I feel inside. The same fear I used to have that I had “lost myself” when I met Justin is the same feeling I am having now.
I moved back to my Studio this week (an office and studio I have set up away from my house). The last time I was here was the day of the accident. Waiting for me on my desk when I came back was the 1/2 full Diet Mountain Dew I had thoughtlessly left behind when I last left the studio March 30th. I had walked away from everything absentmindedly three months ago — and now walking back in to the same space it felt like nothing was different but that I was different. There in my face was everything my “before” self had left behind and now my “after” self felt like a foreigner. There were days of sadness. Whole days lost to tears and mourning. Of not wanting to get out of bed, of avoiding my office, of not eating and of taking long showers.
Inside part of me yelled “heck yeah people, I’m back!!!” and the other part of me just wanted to get back in the bed and cry. I poured over a 16 page senior portrait magazine for my 2013 seniors with excited intensity … and when it was done my thoughts trailed off to my car on the side of the road on 15-501. Coming back to work creates a jumble of overwhelming excitement and anticipation . . . mixed with a jumble of sadness that I “lost” three months of momentum.
Then I remembered what it felt like to fall in love with Justin Porter – and to every day lose a piece of my “before” self in the dizzying celebration of this amazing “after” we were creating. Old Teresa was great, but she was just version 1. I’m now on version 3 and I realize I’ve been through this before and every time I come out stronger, more adaptable, more grateful, and happier.
Sunday, July 1st I will officially return to photography and I am so excited to share with you the rebirth of My Friend Teresa Photography and the rebirth of Teresa Porter. I think you’re going to love what you see.
PS – Thanks.
Update! This happened . . . Broken Bones to Rolling Stone.