Deference is a collection of photographs and journal entries of and about my grandmother, Michal Carney. There are photos that I took of her and that others took of her, but they are all photographs from a time that I knew her, when she was in my life and when she left my life.
When my grandmother was sick, she expressed to me that she did not want to die, and I told her that she wouldn’t. Shortly after, however, I had written in my journal that I hoped that she did. I wasn't sure if I was writing that so that she wouldn't have to suffer anymore, or so I wouldn't, and just a few nights later, she died. I've blamed myself ever since, that my words had some hand in causing her death.
Deference is a meditative process for me to recognize that I am not to blame, no one is, and for me to come to terms with her passing. The journals on the wall recall her death and my actions after her death, whereas the journal entries on the floor are the negative emotions that have plagued me for years. My goal, as others and I step on these journal entries, is that I am released from this guilt, that I am able to view the past in a clear light and see my grandmother for who she is, as well as myself. I want to find peace.