The Dash

Photographing a Carehome

I spent a great day photographing a care home. I was asked to take a series of images for the home’s website and there really wasn’t too much time so the work involved mainly interiors with an opportunity for a couple of portraits.

I found it a very emotional experience, I was discovering my own mortality. My mother worked as a carer in a nursing home as I was growing up so it brought back some strange childhood memories. As a child you are a the complete opposite end of the age spectrum so didn’t really appreciate what a care home was, I just knew it was full of older people.


When I got home I looked on my pin board and it prompted me to read a poem / eulogy The Dash, which found its way there many years ago but I never got to take it down. It is a poignant   reminder of how short life is and how limited our time here is and how important it is to lead the life you want, a life with no regrets.



The Dash (Linda Ellis)

I read of a man who stood to speak at the funeral of a friend. He referred to the dates on her casket from beginning to the end. He noted that first came the date of her birth and spoke of the following date with tears, but he said what mattered most of all was the dash between those years. For that dash represents all the time that she spent alive on earth and now only those who loved her know what that little line is worth.
For it matters not, how much we own, the cars, the house, the cash,

What matters is how we live and love and how we spend our dash.The Dash

So think about this long and hard; Are there things you would like to change?

For you never know how much time is left that can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough to consider what is true and real

and always try to understand the way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger and show appreciation more

and love the people in our lives like we have never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect and more often wear a smile,

Remembering that this special dash might only last a little while.

So when your eulogy is being read with your life’s actions to rehash…..

Would you be proud of the things they say about how you spent your dash?

Linda Ellis


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