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Laval, QC, August 2008
If it's easier to be healthy than it is to be sick, then it's also easier to have healthy parents instead of sick ones. But no one's life follows a set plan and the path we ultimately take isn't necessarily the one that's most fair.
As many of you may know, my father's path hasn't been an easy one in recent years. Even when he's home from the hospital - as he was during our trip to Montreal in August - he continues to have days, even moments, when the mishmash of overlapping illnesses that have come to define his life choose to make themselves even more obvious.
I was haunted as soon as I took this picture. I almost felt that, as his son, I shouldn't be taking photos that might upset him or my mother. I had been walking along the perimeter of the pool area, shooting inward as he sat quietly beside the water. It wasn't a good day for him. Yet I still shot. And despite an initial urge to delete the file off of the camera, I kept it. And still it bothered me.
Three months later, I've chosen to share it here. On the small chance that he ever sees this, I hope he understands that I capture the things I do not because the world needs to be depicted in airbrushed perfection - i.e. everyone from every generation lined up in neat rows smiling perfect if insincere smiles - but because sometimes things should simply be depicted as they are.
About this photo: I include this image as part of this week's Thematic Photographic autumn theme (available here) because his look suggests reflection. I wonder if, as he stares out at his grandchildren playing in the pool, he's wondering about the seasons, and how they don't just apply to the months of the year, but to our entire lives as well. We don't discuss these things in our family, so I use my camera and my pen to do the discussing for me.
Your turn: Please share a caption for this photo. Unlike past Caption This images, this one isn't funny or flip. Still, I hope you'll give it some thought and share your thoughts in a comment below. For more background on Caption This, please click here.
About last week's image of Frasier tucking Dahlia in: It's moments like this that reinforce why a chaotic house filled with kids and noise is the perfect place for me. Honorable menschens go to the following wondrous folks:
- MorahMommy: "Tell me a story and then I'll go to bed." (I know she's my wife. She's also really creative!)
- Moi: "Let sleeping dogs lie." (If only.)
- Colleen: "A girl's idea of heaven on earth." (Couldn't agree more.)
- Awareness: "Canine Comforter." (I think he sees himself as warmth personified.)
- John: "Friendship is the most colorful place to be." (He's certainly become their best friend.)
- Anonymous: "When Hairy Met Dahlia." (A fan favorite around here.)