Not Another Picture.

Submitted into Contest #144 in response to: Write about a character who’s pathologically camera shy.... view prompt


Happy Teens & Young Adult Inspirational

For many years her mother complained about not having any pictures, of her radiant face as she calls it, to hang on the front room walls. After Arabella turned fourteen she just down right refused to take any photos, or be put in family videos.

Arabella had always ran from her father with a camcorder, when he came shooting for family memories. She would crouch and hide when someone called out for family group pictures.

Arabella had a condition that made her stomach squirm when even the word photograph was mentioned. Over the years though, she has adapted and come to terms with her pathological photo shyness. Everyone else however, were not so tolerate of her picture freight phenomenon.

"Arabella dear. Please come and join us in the picture. It is your father's birthday and he would like you in the picture." Demanded Arabella's mother, looking rather grim and Arabella crossed her arms in difiance, giving a little huff.

"Mom! Why do I have to be in the stupid picture? You guys have plenty of my baby pictures. Even my school pictures up to 7th grade."

Staggering into the front room, from birthday happiness and cake and ice cream intoxication, Arabella's father called out to everyone present in the living room.

"Hey you guys! Come on, let's take a picture of this occasion. Arabella you too, come get in the picture."

Giving her mother a nasty look, Arabella suddenly stormed off towards her bedroom, her mother and father faced one another in concern.

"What has gotten into her?" Arabella's father asked, but then shrugged his shoulders airy. "Oh well. That is her lost if she doesn't want to be included. Come on everyone, say cheese on the count of three."

Herbert, Sandra's brother and Sandra being Arabella's mother, took the birthday photograph. The picture turned out fairly well except for Sandra's noticeable frown upon her face.

Furthermore, Todd, Arabella's father, gave his wife Sandra, and Arabella's cousin John, bunny ears behind their head in the heat of birthday giddyness.

At that moment, when the pictures were finally snapped to a close, Sandra had a sadding feeling and ventured off from the birthday party and towards Arabella's room to check on her.

"Bang! Bang! Arabella, are you alright in there? Can I come in and talk with you?"

After a few minutes, Arabella unlocked her door and her mother calmly stepped inside the bedroom. Arabella had been crying a little in her pillow and the tears produced wet stains here and there upon it. Sandra spoke with a soft voice.

"Listen. I do not know what exactly is going on with this fanitic obsession of yours and pictures, but we need to resolve it soon. You are going to turn sixteen soon."

Staring out her window, holding her pillow to her stomach, Arabella sniffled and fumed without looking away from the window.

"It is not an obession! I just don't like taking pictures anymore mom. I don't like the way it makes me feel when that thing is pointing at me."

"I know it is tough being young as you are, but one day your going to have to overcome this." Sandra then took Arabella's hand and held it. "Do you not think you are pretty dear?"

Quickly looking at her mother, Arabella raised one eyebrow and gave her mother a patronazing glare.

"Of course not mother. I mean, I do not think I am prettier than some, but I think my looks are ok. It is something different. I feel stupid when I take photos."

"How about you and me go see someone tomorrow about this condition of yours, uh?" Arabella's mother leaned in closer to her ear. "We can also do some shopping at the mall as well. Just don't tell your father."

Smiling and rising off Arabella's bed, Sandra causally walked to the bedroom door. Sandra then turned to face Arabella, whom decided to stare out the window again, and added some extra advice.

"Don't sit in your room all day being gloomy. Take a few minutes and come and join your father's birthday party. Ok? Pouting and dwelling on it will only make it worse."

Not saying a word Arabella nodded her agreement and soon made her way to her father's birthday party. The party lasted up until dinner time and the rest of Arabella's family said their goodbyes as they left to return back to their own homes.

Morning finally arriving the next day, Sandra and her daughter Arabella did as Sandra planned. They went to the doctor first. Arabella was diagnosed with Scopophobia, an illness with the excessive fear of being watched all the time.

They spent the afternoon raiding the malls and even stopped at a fast food jot for a quick bite to eat before heading back home. That day became a very special day for Arabella and she grew closer to her family because of it.

"You have fun today dear?" Inquired Sandra.

"Yeah. I think this might be the best day of my life." Grinned Arabella.

"I am glad you are happy. I believe with faith we can beat this illness of yours. I do not think it is that bad. Your father will help too."

"There is nothing we can not over come Arabella. Remember that for me, will you?"

Patting her mother's hand, Arabella replied with surging confidence.

"Do not worry mother. It will all be ok."

With a prescription and a head lead on Arabella's condition, Arabella eventually learned to cope and function properly around cameras and camcorders.

Soon, Arabella gradually participated in the family photographs and videos. Her family, though staying attentive to her condition, encouraged her little by little.

Over the years, she has graduated high school and finished college. There has been so many families who supported each other, but if one had an option to choose the most determined, one might find this choice to be a winner.

She is now a news reporter for the five o'clock news. Her mother, up in age, watching comfortable on the couch, with Todd her husband and Arabella's father, with a triumphant expression on her face.

May 04, 2022 22:19

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Jeanne DeFauw
23:54 May 11, 2022

I like the happy ending.


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Fiery Red
10:07 May 08, 2022

Beautifully written. The ending is a sure winner. Keep up the good work 😊


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