As the words end on one I turn to begin a new series of them, the page feels light and the gentle sound feels warm as it plays through my ears. The turning of a page. So significant when thought of on a grand scale and so rewarding when thought of on the small one; one page at a time in a book filled with hundreds of them. Very similar to the life we lead. Each day a new page, each hour begins the next paragraph, and the sentences play out just as the minutes do. Life. It is simply fascinating to be a part of.
In my life I have covered many chapters, chapters that have filled numerous books. Looking back on them all in my mind I am proud of how far I have come. And, I am excited about where this new book will lead me. With each turn of the page the story gets more interesting.
I am not the only character in my story. People enter it, some who may never know they have become a sentence or two in my tale. One such person I met on Wednesday, while I was waiting for a scheduled appointment with a Veteran Affairs counselor. He introduced himself as Jeff. Jeff had seen better days, something his outer appearance suggested. Yet Jeff spoke clearly and seemed quite cognitive. Jeff was polite. Why he chose to speak to me I am not so sure. I had noticed him when I came in the door and checked in. He was sitting by the television eating a slice of cheese pizza. Around him sat a few other people, no one talking to one another. I took a seat on the back wall. I like being in a position where I can see everything before me. Little by little people’s names were called and one by one people disappeared behind the opaque glass door.
Soon the room was filled with me and Jeff. Jeff got up from his seat about a minute after the last name was called. He sat down two chairs away from me. “They take good care of people here. Very kind. No one judges.” Jeff’s words seem to come from a place of compassion and empathy. “I’m Jeff” and he held his hand out. “I’m Brendan. Pleasure meeting you Jeff” and we shook hands, each of us with a firm grip. I liked Jeff immediately. “Jeff, if I may ask, how are things for you?” Jeff took the last bite of his cheese pizza and said “I’m making it. I have some money coming in. I have places to clean-up and places to sleep.”
Jeff got up from his seat and repeated to me how good they are here “You’re in good hands.” He then grabbed his backpack, tossed it over his shoulder and walked out the front door. He didn’t look back, simply made his way to the next paragraph in his story. I thought about Jeff for a while. Someone who I would consider to be in much more need than me, took the time to say the words I needed to hear.
I had a good appointment. Jeff was right, there are some good people here. It makes me feel good knowing that Veterans in a much more challenging situation than me are getting help. It inspires me. I know one day I will have an impact on those I desire to assist. The day was a step forward. A page turned. Our story is written with each moment we breathe. With each action we fill the pages of our life. I like where this book is headed. I think I’ll keeping living it.
About the Author
I’ve always been involved in the arts. My grandmother and father were both portrait painters, so it was something I was immersed in. However, something about photography captivated me. The ability to capture a visual story entices me, for I have always been a bit of a storyteller and I enjoy writing too. My photography has received numerous awards; from publication in Popular Photography to 2015 Best in Show image at The Texas State Fair, regional and national awards in photography, my artwork is in private collections around the world, and I have two books out “Beyond The Image” and “Finding Myself: Visual Tales of an Explore”. I continue to challenge myself and I’m always looking for a new story to make and capture.