Fear of the unknown is an unwelcome encounter. It is something that leaves an individual with the need to be able to grasp on to any tangible sense of solace, in an attempt to feel some reassurance in the face of an unfamiliar path that lay ahead. Through these experiences, there is some relief that is generated in being able to commit trust to these constant aspects of one’s life. Regardless of the permanent fact that an individual will always have to plunge into the unpredictable world ahead, attached to this persistent feeling of fear, there is still a sense of faith in knowing that the recurrent events of the past that have made up an individual will still be present to guide them through the future.
Marco Antonio Cruz’s photograph, Habitar La Oscuridad exemplifies the role that one’s own past securities and comforts play in guiding them through the unpredictability of the future. The aspects of one’s life that have always remained constant allow for an individual to feel reassured. An assurance in a life that lies within the knowledge of what has been faced in their past. They are able to face their future so comfortably, or so blindly in this case, solely because these things have always fulfilled the desired role of security. The photo displays a blind man stepping into a hallway. He takes the self-reliance of venturing into the unknown, unaware of what lay ahead of him. Even as he turns to something that he has absolutely no certainty of, no guide, no cane, no cautions, he still chooses to commit his unwavering trust to the only thing left that would provide any sense of security – his arms. It is as a result of a life that has been stripped of any sight, quite literally in this case, and must commit this faith to the sole constant aspect of their life. He has chosen to leave the familiar structure of the stairs, that have provided the footing to move forward, always knowing of what the steps will feel like that lay ahead, to leave the railing that has unfailingly provided a handle to hold on to. And now he is left to his own journey, an evident sense of change that has been resembled through the evident contrast between the dull shades of the stairs of which he has come from and the checkered floor that is now left to explore. And yet, regardless of the fact that he has chosen to detach from the sole consistent component of this precarious life, there is still the need to hold on to the comfort of knowledge, and is precisely why he ventures into the unknown with an outstretched arm, prepared to, presumably, hold on to the wall, yet another constant aspect of his life that has invariably proved to provide this support. This photo also has been taken from above, peering over the man and his journey as he moves forward. It is ironic that although the blind man is the only one that can not see what is ahead of him, the viewer is just as obscured. Regardless of the fact that this man is physically blind too, there is still the present notion that the viewer, although able to see clearly, can be considered as just as equally blind. That is, blinded to the future that lay ahead.
I have also faced uncertainty in my life, and it has surfaced in the beginning years of my family immigrating here to Canada. Absolutely everything here was so unfamiliar, so foreign, and I was completely unqualified to face this new life, let alone consider myself a Canadian. I was soon to be thrown into the school system and at the time I was simply not prepared to be leaving my parents as they were really the only sense of comfort that I have had. In the midst of this uncertainty I had been compelled to hold on to the very people that provided for me my entire life, the ones that had given me the comfort and security in knowing that they would always be there to supply this solace of knowing that everything will be alright, that they will always be there to reassure me as they always have been. But once that is all just taken away, there is nothing left to hold on to, nobody there to make you know that everything will be alright. And that is exactly how I had felt in my first years of being here in Canada. Now, reflecting on the past and my own personal development over the years, things have fallen into place as usual. This pattern of life is something that I am now completely used to, following expectations and orders and living this procedurally life. But even then, as I move forward in my life and come closer to the end of my high school education, there is yet another decision that will need to be made of where I choose to take my life.
Even as seemingly secure and systematic life gets, there will always be yet another choice to be made, looming around the corner. But looking at my past and how I have chosen to overcome these unfamiliarities gives me the strength to confidently face an uncertain future. Just as those who are blind, I have adapted to this prospect of an uncertain future. I am not certain of what may lay ahead for my life, and I know that I will never be, but being able to understand and move forward from my past will ultimately aid my own bravery venturing into this journey of a future.