The Day I Decided to Live

Shot in October, 2012 in my Mother’s hometown in Tennessee after the sudden death of my beloved Uncle Tony Daniel, AIDS activist and LGBTQ+ personality. Tony’s death coincided closely with my suicide attempt and subsequent diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder. The funeral director had come to my Grandmother’s house to tell us Tony’s cremation had been completed. He brought with him Tony’s clothing and the glasses I had once helped him pick out. As the funeral director placed that pair of glasses on the coffee table, the finality of death overwhelmed me and I broke down. I picked up the only camera I had brought with me, my Mother’s old Minolta Maxxum 7000 and one roll of Kodak Tri-X 400 and one roll of Kodak Gold 200. I clicked the shutter until I could breathe again. I decided to live. My camera became my means of survival.