Five years ago today, Katie asked me to marry her. As I look through our engagement photos, their luster seems dulled, clouded in the reality of who my wife in them really was at the time. In retrospect, we were so happy sharing the mutual discomfort of being professionally photographed. But were we really happy? It’s hard to know.

There is a delicate balance in the celebration of our journey and reliving the reality of our past. I’ve talked about this before, but photos are still a powerful reminder of my grief. I have difficulty confronting who I am in the photos and who I’m with. There’s two versions of our truth: the version we lived and the version I know now that I understand Katie more. The person in the photos with me seems sadder, less present. I still see the essence of our humor, love and respect for the other in the photos, but holding onto only that version feels dishonest and incomplete.

That said, I still love these. Laced in sorrow and despair as they may be now, I still see who we are as a couple in them. They are part of our journey, and, to be honest, I think they are funny. We ate ice cream, joked, and laughed the whole time. Katie was obsessed with the graffiti wall. These pictures encapsulate a snapshot of who we are now. Sometimes that feels sad. Sometimes it doesn’t.

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It should be noted that these photos were taken by the brilliant Blue Rose Photography here in Seattle. I’m honored to have worked with them.

2 thoughts on “4/20

  1. Meggan

    Sometimes I feel the same way looking at our engagement/wedding/other photos. I love the memories, but it’s sad to think that the other person in the pictures wasn’t happy. It helps to talk about it, and I hope one day it won’t make me feel sad.

    That said, your engagement photos are so good! I really love the B&W one of you guys sitting at the coffee shop (?). I hope one day you will be able to look at them without feeling sad too. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Adam

    My wife recently hung out wedding photo in arguably the mist prominent location in our home, right in front of the door when you walk in.

    I think this fills her with some sense of solidarity with our life pre my coming out, but for me I can’t even look at it. It makes me feel both incredibly sad, and like I’m killing the person she really loves and married 8 years ago. At the same time I don’t want to forget the day tied with our son’s birth as the happiest moment of our

    So in short I don’t know what to do or feel about pictures. There like every other aspect of being trans in that they elicit very conflicting emotions and there is no roadmap on how to move forward.

    As always I’m rooting for you and Katie and so glad you are doing this blog.

    Liked by 3 people

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