The Story Behind The Photo

I post photos of me all the time. Selfies of me working or just sitting in my recliner. I post pics of Danny and I.
I have never minded being photographed until the last 2 years when I started to gain weight – a lot of it.
I do wish I had more photos of Danny and I in the last 2 years.

There was one time though when a photo of me went VIRAL all over Facebook and on the internet.

It was meant as a gift but before I even saw it, thousand of others had and had SHARED it ALL OVER.

At first I was stunned. Then I felt invaded. Stripped.
I wasn’t sharing my life on a blog as I do now. I was still in the first stages of grief.

After awhile…..After I calmed down. I saw what they saw. A women who looked happy on the surface but whose eyes told a different story.

Most of the people who shared it never even realized that it was a personal photo and hadn’t be intended for anyoneΒ but meΒ to see.

What is the picture in question:

Behind My Smile
Behind My Smile

The Story Behind the photo.
Danny and I had been busy all week at the park. It was Spring Break and we were Filled to Overflowing.
We were tired but happy.
This took place on a Sunday Afternoon.

We had interacted with campers all week.
visiting with them while working. Seeing them while we clean bathhouses and filled toilet paper.
We’d answered questions and gave directions.

We were also needing a break.
Danny and I were checking on the campground around noon or a little after.
We got stopped and a guy we had talked to asked us if we could help them with their electric.

Of course we did.
I was excited because they were with a huge group and one of them had a TINY HOME.

I’d been eyeing it all weekend. So had Danny.

Danny went to work on the electric and I asked of I could get a little closer look at the house.
I not only got a closer look but we got a tour of it,

893280_480913165309214_1483076517_oThis is the original photo.

It took awhile for me to realize that it was actually an honor for me to be in such a photo that thousands of people connected with.

34 Comments Add yours

  1. Judy says:

    This was so touching and inspiring. Perhaps Bobby didn’t have a wife or children to grieve him, but there is a loss there in not having him “carried on” in that way. I’ve seen some bereaved parents find ways to see their personal situation as easier to bear and others just the opposite.
    Either way, it was a heartbreaking loss and reading that you’ve found peace with it is heartening for me. It is awful to suffer for the rest of our life after losing a child. I also was proud of survival and eventually celebrated actually being able to feel joy again.
    What a beautiful man he was!

    1. I ALWAYS LONGED to be a Grandma.

      1. Judy says:

        I’m so sorry, Sarah. I know that feeling about longing for what they could have done with their life. Sometimes it is unbelievable to me imagining my son being so much older. His birthday is next week; he would have been 29! He was 5 when he died.

        1. I see Bobby as he would be now. Not always but a good part of the time.
          I can’t explain it.

        2. You had so little time.

          1. Judy says:

            That is true, but I took all the love I had left inside my bleeding heart and transferred it to a new child and another one 3 years after that. They could not replace what I lost, but are here now and a great gift to me. Thank you, Sarah.

            1. Danny got all of my love. Once I moved here to Florida everything changed.
              I seldom see my family when I use to see them 4 or more times a year.
              We don’t travel and I love road trips.

              1. Judy says:

                It’s never too late Sarah to plan another trip. It might be just what you need to release the anger. There might be a creative way for you to do this even if he won’t go. A girl friend of mine just drove across the country to visit her mother – LA to Michigan! Are you able to do something on your own if he won’t go?

                1. We haven’t been able to go anywhere.
                  The money just hasn’t been there.
                  I did go home to Illinois after mom died.
                  My dad gave me / us money at Christmas.
                  We are going to Arizona in October to visit him.
                  We have the money to get there and back.
                  I just wish Danny would save for it.
                  There are things we both could do.
                  Him more than me.
                  He doesn’t see the need.
                  I would like to do things.
                  He promised me we could visit Colorado. Durango and Silverton. We really need more money than we have.
                  It’s frustrating because I know how to save.

                  1. Judy says:

                    It sounds challenging. I hope things improve for you and turn around. Hope is important. I remember feelings as you did. I focused on how there wasn’t enough money, but in the end the hardest part was feeling unloved.

                    1. My mood seems to be a bit better. Still way too emotional.
                      I can’t believe how far behind I got here.

                2. I have never minded traveling by myself.
                  It would be hard now because of my health.

                  1. Judy says:

                    I’m so sorry – health issues can be monumental.

    2. I love celebrating his life.
      Hugs to you.

    3. I thought I had answered this post. How are you doing? I got behind here on my mesages. Hugs

      1. Judy says:

        Thanks, Sarah! I’m hanging in there. I haven’t posted to my own blog in awhile. I battle depression with my own health issues and find it harder to write. I did compose a new song, though. Nice of you to check in with me. I understand about the emotional part – I get that way, too. It’s very easy for me to cry!

        1. Sending love and hugs.

  2. Reblogged this on and commented:

    This IS ME. Bobby’s Mom. Danny’s Wife. Debbie and Sarah all in one person.

  3. yhealthy2000 says:

    Oh Sarah, you are awesome. A friend of mine also lost her son in a car accident (their van got hit by a drunk driver) several years ago. It’s hard for her even now. He would be in his early 20s if alive. I have the utmost regard for you.

    1. Actually, I hit the like but Obviously I hate it.
      Yaz, Most people really don’t understand that you never really get over it/get past it and you shouldn’t be expected to. Bobby still hold the best part of my heart. Or holds it with Danny.
      I feel Bobby here with me so much of the time.
      I see him like he would be now.
      Gentle hugs to your friend.
      Love to you.

      1. yhealthy2000 says:

        I will share your story with her. Your heart has to carry to much loss. It’s something most of us cannot completely understand. I wish peace for you.

        1. If she ever needs someone to just listen to her please give here my email.

          1. yhealthy2000 says:

            Will do. Hugs to you.

        2. One thing I have learned and I am not sure It will make sense but : Bobby’s death for me was/is and will always be the worse thing I could go through and YET, I have always known I HAD/ HAVE It EASIER than many.
          He was single so he didn’t have a wife and children left behind to grieve.
          His death was QUICK. Over. He wasn’t sick for long periods before he died. He was HAPPY right up until the last few minutes.
          We said everything that we ever could have said to each other. Many times.
          The I love you’s etc.
          There was no trials to go through.
          The list goes on.
          We didn’t have all of the bad moments that many parents had /have with their kids.
          There is NOTHING I want to go back and change.
          I am also very glad I didn’t know he would die early. We were happy that last day.
          How many people ever have such a full filled life with no regrets. Or few regrets.
          Does that make sense?

          1. yhealthy2000 says:

            It does make sense. Bobby’s death brought you sadness, but sadness which is/was pure…no other stuff attached to it. Pure love is what you have from him. Amazing.

        3. So I really am at peace with Bobby’s Death.
          It’s life here I am struggling with
          And I am good there. Summers are just HARD.
          I am watching the SUNSET. The Cows are making a racket. My windows are opened.
          It is a great day in our NEck Of The Woods.
          How is life treating you?

          1. yhealthy2000 says:

            I am grateful for many things in my life. However, sometimes, I think I complain about silly things. I really need to learn to be quiet more. Or, engage my brain before I say something. I do choose to have positive days…I just need more hours in my day. I am not able to work on my blog these days. My daughter recently had a auto accident. She and all involved came out safe. She is scared and now does not want to drive. So, we have to start over with her. I take her everywhere she wants to go after school. It’s fine, I don’t mind doing it, but I can’t be blogging. My feel exhausted. But I also know that this will get better. I am waiting for that day. No rush…I want my daughter to feel comfortable again driving a car.

  4. Heather says:

    You wear your heart on your face. I like your photo.

    1. There’s a photo of me…Kind of the same look…I am sitting on the porch of our house….Before we moved in….
      I was wearing a RED shirt. (I Love red). It was Christmas Eve Day.
      Danny took my photo.
      It was a really good one of me.
      I heard for 3 different people that I didn’t know say….I looked happy in the photo until they saw my eyes.
      They all said my eyes tell a different story.
      My dad has said that many times.
      When mom and dad were here 5 years ago to visit…We had a really good time. They love Danny and he loves them…
      Danny told me later that Dad asked him about me. Dad said even though I was happy and seemed happy…(And I was back then…I was thinner as well) My eyes held such sadness sometimes.
      I asked Danny if he thought so and he say that he sees it all the time.
      They use to be shiny and oh so blue.

      1. Heather says:

        I’m confident, they will be again πŸ™‚

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