So many words entered my mind when I started thinking about what I wanted to say about a sweet woman named Sheri and her love for a horse named Diablo. As I sat here and edited this session tears flowed, smiles crept in here and there, heart ached, my own memories of being around horses flooded my mind....but at the forefront of all that *I* was feeling was what Sheri must have been feeling over the last month or so knowing that the time had come to let sweet Diablo take his last pictures and let him rest. Stoic, majestic Diablo. The.most.gentle horse one could ever know. Nothing phases him, nothing scares him....nothing seems to have an older soul than he does. Those big brown eyes just take you in. I swear you really can see wisdom and his heart through those eyes. He is one in a million...he is Sheri's baby...her pride and joy.
When she told me a few weeks ago that she was having to put him down my heart immediately hurt. I think most of us have had to endure what it's like to put an animal down, whether it be when you were a child or in your adult life. It doesn't get any easier the older you get. I actually think it's harder. You feel things more deeply, you know the finality of things...you love more. Being a photographer the next thing I thought of was only natural. I asked her if she had any pictures with him. She stopped for a minute, took a breath and said, "No. I don't. I was always the one behind the camera admiring him, doting on him...." and she trailed off and began to tear up. I got teary eyed too and asked her if she would like for me to come out and take some pictures of the two of them together and she smiled....and said yes. I have done this once before for someone who was waiting on their animal to pass and it meant the world to her to have those photos of her dogs (there were two that were ailing) that she could look back on a remember them by. Obviously one never forgets the love they have for their pet after they're gone, but they are just nice to have and to physically hold on to on the days that are tougher to get through than others.
So, I leave you with some pictures of Sheri and Diablo... I continued to shoot through her tears... I wanted to capture them in that moment and I didn't hesitate to cry right along with her as I put my camera down and my arms around her neck. ♥