love

Mom in the City

She led the way up the ladder. The roof isn't exactly easy to get to, or even safe, for that matter. In order to get up there you have to climb up a poorly welded ladder. Most people take one look at the rust, and ask, "Are you sure it's safe."  But not mom.  "Don't worry, Honey, I'm a monkey!"

We sat there, on the roof, and she told about when she was younger she used to climb up into water towers, late at night. She and her friends would dangle their feet off the top, high above the ground. This is the side of her that I love imagining: adventurous and daring. I never really got to see that side of her because she always had to be responsible and set a good example for my sisters and me. But I love thinking about what she was like before she had children. We always joke that we would have been best friends back then, but in retrospect, we pretty much are now. I guess I just wish that I could have been alive during the funnest part of her life.

Before we went back down, she took a moment to look out at the city; her hair and dress lightly blowing around in the wind. It was a beautiful day.

Everyday

How appropriate it is that yesterday was also my parents anniversary. Two people who love each other so completely. A love that has taken many forms over the last 40 years of being together. In recent years I have come to realize how important it is for me to photograph them, if only to hold onto the present or past. Simple moments.  It's a real pleasure to see a love so admirable, so quiet, so sweet. I wish that love on everyone. It would make all the other stuff worth it. It has to.

 "It doesn't get any better than this: music with my best friends in the moonlight." Dad said as we sat at the table outside on a spring night. 

 "It doesn't get any better than this: music with my best friends in the moonlight." Dad said as we sat at the table outside on a spring night. 

31

Jeff, the handsome one on the left, turns 31 today. We have, I'd say, a rather unique relationship. We've been together for ten years now: long-distance over the last five, and have three more years to go before we can finally be back in the same state/city/timezone. And the unfortunate thing is that people don't really treat you like you're a real couple unless you're married, but very few couples could sustain a long distance relationship the way that we have. Somehow Jeff makes it work sort of effortlessly. He is smart, incredibly thoughtful, and really funny. Most people think he's shy, and they're right, he can be, but few people get to see him glow when he gets excited about a topic, and how chatty he is after having coffee, never listened to him learn and play their favorite song on a piano, or received a handcrafted gift that makes them want to cry because it took him months to think up or make, never had him shave their head, and him still look at them like they are the most beautiful person he's ever seen. And while I wish everyone could see what i've seen, of him, over the last 10 years, it's also pretty special that I get to be the one he shares it with.

He is truly one of a kind and I'm grateful for every minute we get to spend together (even if we are apart.) 

Fixing the Light

They came to visit me in San Francisco. My kitchen light had been acting as an odious strobe light for a month or two. As unsettling as it may have been, I am very low maintenance and would just avoid turning on the light, all together, instead of taking the time to change it. But that's one of the good things about Dads, they like to fix things for their kids.

That ladder was incredibly rickety, and for a minute I did worry for his safety. But then I thought back on his strengthening exercises he used to do at night (he would stand on one foot and closes his eyes for extended amounts of time -- try it, it's hard.) and I realized he probably has better balance than I do, even if he is in his mid-sixties. Mom cautiously stood beside him, looking less worried than I'd expect, holding down his left calf until he successfully fixed the light.