My secret series

with 11 Comments

I have been working on this series for some time now.  I was not sure what the best way to reveal  these self portraits, but decided to hold off until it was complete.  It is a deeply personal story but one that I felt was worth sharing.

At the age of twelve, I walked into the garage to find my mother’s lifeless body sitting in the driver’s seat of her car with the engine on and doors closed tight. “My secret” is a very personal and retrospective self portrait series documenting the emotional roller coaster one goes through after losing a parent to suicide.

Failure to See the Signs:  This image is me, standing with my eyes covered…….not seeing the warning signs.

failure to see the signs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A million Little Pieces:  This image is a childhood photo that I used to represent my childhood crumbling into a million pieces.

a million little pieces

 

The Act:  This was one of favourite images to create.  This is me, in my garage….Although carbon monoxide can’t be seen or smelled, I wanted to use a cloud of “smoke” to represent it visually.

caught in the act

Buried in Burden:  The idea behind this image hit me from left field.  I saw the snow bank in a parking lot and raced home t get my camera knowing that this was the perfect way to illustrate my idea.

buried in burden

Failure to Bloom:  This image is me, lying amongst pink carnations which are believed to have first appeared on earth from the  Virgin Mary’s tears, making them symbolic of a mother’s undying love.  Surrounded in pink carnations, frozen and unable to bloom.  I felt that at the time of my mother’s death, that I was forced to grow up overnight.  I felt responsible for my younger siblings.  This image, represents my failure to bloom as a teenager.

ready to bloom

Unanswered:  This image is meaningful to me as it represents my inability at the time to express my truest thoughts and emotions about my mother’s suicide.  My grandmother insisted that no one know that it was suicide due to the negative stigma associated with mental illness and we were told that if anyone asked, to say that the cause of death was a car accident.  This image is me, trying to call out for help, but my calls being unanswered.

unanswered

Holding on to the past:  I used a doll house in this image to represent my childhood….a way to hold on to my perfect life.

holding on to the past

Exposed:  At the time, I felt that I was on display…exposed for the world to see while at the same time, not having anyone see the real me.  The constant whispering I heard whenever I was in public……”that’s the girl who lost her mom”.
exposed-22b

Cocoon:  I wished that I could just curl up in a safe environment like a cocoon and hide from reality.cocooned

 

Broken:  I wanted to illustrate the feeling of being broken…..completely…..
broken

 

Tainted Reality:  This image is intended to illustrate the idea that as a child losing a parent, you often feel a disconnect with your life.

blood sky

Running from my reality:  All I wanted to do was run….run from my fears, run from the lies……

running from my reality

Blindly searching for Stability:  When your world is torn upside down, all you seek is stability. My life was anything but stable after losing my mother.  My parents were divorced.  My father was distant….my brothers and I moved from our home with our mother into a new life with our father, in a new city, with a new family.  It was definitely a time of upheaval and turmoil.

blindly searching for stability

Catapult to Heaven:  I would often fantasize about being reunited with my mother.  That it was all a mistake.  I would stop dead in my tracks when a car like hers would drive by, or when someone would walk by me that resembled her.  I yearned to see her again….to hear her voice…..to smell her smell……all the little things.

catapult to heaven

Inner Strength:  As I embarked on my journey, the day came when the pain eased in my heart.  The anger subsided.  That day I knew that I would be okay…..I would be a survivor.  I would hold her close to my heart forever, but I would stand on my own two feet, and embrace this life that I have been given with all that I am.

inner strength

 

11 Responses

  1. Meganne Huett
    | Reply

    I am so thankful for this convention for many reasons. Getting to meet you is one of them. What a beautiful series.

  2. Brooke Shaden
    | Reply

    I am so grateful that you could express those emotions through your imagery. That is a terribly difficult thing to go through and that you are sharing it is brave. I know it will help someone out there struggling. I hope it was cathartic for you, too. Each image is expressive, each tells a story. Thank you for doing this.

    • mooreimg
      | Reply

      thank you so much Brooke. I will be forever grateful to have met you xo

  3. Peta Tibbetts
    | Reply

    Lora…..I’m speechless …your creativity, talent, honesty and willingness to let us peek into your perspective is breathtaking and inspiring…….

    • mooreimg
      | Reply

      You are kind Peta.

  4. Steph Flynn
    | Reply

    Moving, brave and raw. Absolutely stunning!!

    • mooreimg
      | Reply

      Thank you so much

  5. Bill
    | Reply

    WOW… You never cease to amaze me, what courage and vision to produce this series…

    • mooreimg
      | Reply

      Thanks so much Bill

  6. Lise
    | Reply

    Hi Lora, I was moved to tears. I saw your rawness and turmoil in your photos and descriptions, and the vulnerability of you then, and now. What courage you have had to show since you were 12; and what courage it took to make those photos public. I think you will help many people with it – the silent type who just need a tug of the heart to heal a layer of the onion gently and quietly. Congratulations on finishing it. I hope it was cathartic and healing for you.

    • mooreimg
      | Reply

      thank you xo

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