This is the first part of a series I will do about Tom. I’ve followed Tom for some years now and I’ve accumulated quite a few pictures and small series that I will try to put together here.
I first met Tom in August 2016. The top picture is the first portrait I ever took of him. Tom told me that he had a fight with his girlfriend a few days earlier. He told me that, during the spectacle, she had pushed him out of her bed so he broke his arm in the process — nobody knows what really happened. When I met him he was on his way to the hospital to get his arm checked, he had been meaning to go since the incident. I offered to follow him to the emergency room but he refused to go right away, he would rather wait a few hours. Tom said he didn't like hospitals and that he wanted to grab a bite first. I doubt that he ever got arm checked. As it shows in the picture his arm is in a pretty bad state, all crooked, swollen and bruised. But Tom was very calm about it. Tom is always very calm about things that would freak out anybody.
Now I've met and visited Tom on multiple occasions. What strikes me is that he always has these terrible injuries and that his relationships is a constant turmoil. Yet he is always so calm. The second time I ran into Tom was a month or so after I first saw him, he and his special ladyfriend Elisa was napping in a small park in the neighbourhood. The spectacle was long forgotten and Tom was his mild self as usual. Tom and Elisa was a couple for a few months, but Tom is a ladies man so to be honest it’s hard to keep track of his relationships.
Tom has struggled with drug abuse most of his life. Because of the drugs he’s never really experienced a real life, doing real things. Tom grew up in different orphanages. He was taken from home because of his violent stepmother and abusive father. He told me how he was completely neglected by the people who where supposed to take care him. I guess this is a tragic but unfortunately far from singular story.