Last week we posted a response to the Boston Marathon bombings. Accompanying the post was a photo of two Afghan women holding a sign that read ‘To Boston From Kabul with Love.’ The photo is a part of a series as is the photo above. These pictures are beautiful, but inevitability draw questions of, ‘was this Photoshop ‘ and ‘Can this be true?’ These questions unfold to reveal the true question- Is this compassion from across the world, from an area that deals with bombings and losing loved ones daily, real? We found the story behind the pictures.
The photographer is from Boston and lives there with her family. 6 weeks before the Boston Marathon she went to Afghanistan to work on a film. She was used to getting texts from her friends and family when Afghanistan made the news, but when she woke up she saw a text that she originally thought was one of her outgoing texts, but she realized it was incoming from her husband- “We’re ok. And everyone we know is safe.”
Feeling trapped with no way to help her city, she thought the very least she could do is take a photo to send her support. She made the simple sign seen in the photos and headed out.
I made the sign, “To Boston. From Kabul. With Love.” and planned to take one picture of me holding it. But my intent changed as I talked to people here about what had happened – many had heard the news – and I saw the pain in their faces, and reminders of their own hardships. They said, “I’m so sorry,” with that defining head shake that doesn’t need another word of explanation; it says, “I understand.”