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Photo taken by contributor Evokative Photographie, a 31-year-old woman from Pocatello, ID. She has struggled with Major Depressive Disorder since she was a teen, and has been managing it with medication since she was in her early 20s. She has also struggled regularly with anxiety. E.P. is a divorced single mother of a young daughter who is both a source of great joy and great frustration to her. She has been a photography hobbyist since high school but began a more serious foray in 2011. She felt the need to try to visually represent mental health disorders so that people who don’t experience them might begin to understand what it’s like for those who live with mental illness.
About this photo: “This is a self-portrait that is part of a series of 52 self-portraits I’ve made a goal to take this year. It represents how I feel when I read. My favorite genres are science fiction and fantasy, because when I read something in those genres I feel completely transported – I often read just before bed, because it helps me to wind down and calm my mind, so that it’s not running in circles or creating new worries to feed my anxiety. The darkness surrounding me in the photo represents both the outside world from which I seek refuge, and the way that the outside world is muted when I read. The light represents the clarity and calm that reading brings to me.“