Today in my role as Education Manager at Tuttle Cameras a former student of mine I hadn't seen in well over a year came back to the store to take a photo class. I recognized her immediately in that familiar but it's been a while sort of way. She looked the same and different at the same time.
As she beamed at me, she began to share with me where she'd been and what had happened over the time away like old friends do. As she did my heart began to break.
This woman had conquered a mountain of illness and related health challenges. Some of her experiences were down right traumatic. I was stunned. And she was smiling. We hugged.
It reminded me that although these relationships start with a lot of camera talk, we move through the layers. I hear about their families, they hear about my passion projects and art. We so often become friends. And I like it that way. Because most of the time people are amazing beings; fascinating because of our differences, familiar because of our similarities. Bonded by them both.
I can't wait to see who else I get to meet and work with in 2016.