m&m analogy

Rehab, Day 10, Feb. 13, 2017

Transportation to orthopedist appointment

Monday 8:27am
I woke up with you on my mind.
You called me babe last night —
my heart is still pounding.

Tuesday 10:53pm
Today I realized we won’t work.
What we are is hurting her.
And I think she matters more to me than you do.

Wednesday 11:52pm
I broke things off with you today.
She barely said a word.
I’ve never regretted anything more than this.

Thursday 4:03pm
I shouldn’t have sent that message.
You shouldn’t have been so okay with receiving it.

Friday 9:57pm
I almost messaged you today.
I didn’t.

Saturday 8:49pm
I’m walking around town in search of alcohol.
They say that liquor numbs the pain of having a broken heart.
I want to put that to the test.

Sunday 2:32am
I heard you texted a girl you’ve never spoken to before.
I wonder if it’s because you’re trying to replace me.
I can’t help but wish you weren’t.
I thought I was irreplaceable.

—  a week with you on my mind, c.j.n.

Rehab, Day One, Feb. 4, 2017

* * *

My cousin gave our grandmother a plush red monkey toy to comfort her in bed. She named it Valentino in honor of Valentine’s Day. 

Rehab, Day Two, Feb. 5, 2017

* * *

My grandmother’s first steps on her own, following knee surgery.


never the wrong season by Danielle Nelson
Via Flickr:
For spring. Image made with my Hasselblad 500 C/M.

Rehab, Day One, Feb. 4, 2017

* * *

My 93-year-old grandmother had a successful knee surgery after breaking her kneecap two weeks ago. She’s spent the past nine days in rehab.

The first few days of rehab were challenging, given that she lives a fully independent and active life, despite her age. Being bedridden now, with her leg immobilized and other bodily functions inhibited has led to much frustration and anxiety during the early stages of her recovery.

Family members, myself included, have spent as much time as possible at her bedside to help lift her spirits and to assist in whatever ways are needed.

Initially, I made a few photographs of her to include with written updates for concerned out-of-town family members and friends. These images, however, have taken shape into a photography project.

The aim going forward is to document, step-by-step, as much as possible, my grandmother’s recovery. Each time we visit, I’m shooting at least one roll of B&W 120mm film – analog, rather than digital, seems to be the appropriate medium for such a project. The best images will be complied into a book, I think, and I’ll also post some on this blog, to report on her progress.

My grandmother and her strength are the inspiration behind this project. I also credit Ted Forbes at The Art of Photography for encouraging photographers to produce “work that matters.” (I learned how to shoot and process film from his YouTube series.)

My grandmother has an orthopedist appointment tomorrow, at which time we’ll have a better idea of how long she’ll be in rehab. Based on what caregivers have said up to this point, we’re looking at three to four weeks, total. According to her PT and OT nurses, she’s ahead of the curve.


Looking back, I can’t remember the truth. I blew everything out of proportion so I could feel the hurt and betrayal and write about it in vivid detail. It was my own method of torture. My own undoing; and I enjoyed every second of it.
—  c.j.n.

always. by Danielle Nelson
Via Flickr:
One of my favorite places - Mt. Rainier. I never fail to feel a fluttering of the heart on the drive up towards Paradise, wondering what those meadows will look like this time. Image made with my Hasselblad 500 C/M.