” We keep this love in a photograph, we made these memories for ourselves. Where our eyes are never closing, hearts are never broken, and time’s forever frozen still. And if you hurt me, that’s okay baby, only words bleed. Inside these pages you just hold me… ” – Photograph by Ed Sheeran
It’s been bothering me how insignificant our relationship has felt, especially in feeling the good memories (because, ya know…I can’t just leave well enough alone). As I sat around the other day and went through all of my old photos, I realized how grateful I am, that despite numerous people suggesting it, I did not completely delete every photo of him or us.
Those photos are the only thing I have that remind me of that time in my life. A lot of his belongings and written professions of love have lost their value to me, as I question what was real and what it even felt like…but those photos…they don’t need to be felt or even remembered, they just offer proof that at one point, I thought he loved me, and we were happy about it. They remind me that even though I can’t feel him anymore, his embrace used to be my idea of home, and you can see that in the comfort of my body language and the genuine smile on my face.
Photos tend to freeze some of the best parts of life. Like the last picture we took together, you can’t see the pain or the confusion that was happening in that moment, only two people that were heartbroken at the idea of letting go. You can’t see selfishness, mind games, heartache, or any of the other things that have caused me to wipe us from my emotional memory; and as I desperately try to keep that part of my life from insignificance, it’s nice to still have our good moments frozen in time.
I can’t say that this means I look back fondly, or that I even feel anything worth mentioning again, but the version of me posing in every one of those pictures knew what it felt like to love and be loved by him. Even though I can’t feel it or even assume it was genuine, I can see it, and that’s all I need to keep from feeling oblivious to the fact that it happened.
My advice to anyone going through the same thing; Don’t do yourself the disservice of erasing a major part of your life just because it hurt in the end. You didn’t burn the photo your mom took of you face planting off your tricycle at three years old, so why would you delete every memory of your face plant of a relationship? They’re both memories, and sometimes those pictures are the only we have left.