12.15.16
Families

Fourteen years after a brain surgery called Deep Brain Stimulation  and 24 years after her diagnosis of Parkinson's Disease, my mom is still here on earth with us.  Which is a result of an incredibly strong heart muscle, Western medicine, some Girl From New Hampshire grit, and a genuine, deeply rooted lack of suffering.  In spite of everything my mom could suffer about, my mother does not suffer.  Suffering, she has inadvertently taught everyone around her, is a choice.   Every day she gets up and she is inspired and motivated to accomplish any and all daily tasks.  She lives in a nursing home among dedicated, incredible staff, and she attends crafts, bingo, trivia, happy hour (BYO chardonnay!), and choga (which if ya don't know, now ya know: is chair yoga)!  My mom can barely open her eyes, cannot use her legs at all, and can use her arms less every year, but she does not even mention it.

And this is my MOM!!  This is who I'm from! With all the pain and all the tears and all the anger, I feel like the luckiest person in the world! And everyone who works with her at the nursing home feels the same way.   Watching someone who is motivated and inspired by her challenges, not defeated by them, is the greatest gift anyone could give this world.

Over the 24 years of watching my mom become trapped in her own body I have been through many stages of sadness, anger, and grief myself.  A few years ago, taking a page from my mom's Do Not Suffer book, I had an idea how to get us back into the Mother Daughter Creative Duo we once were.  I started to bring my camera and tripod into her nursing home and photographing the two of us together.  She tried her hardest to open her eyes to look right at the camera like I asked her to, and she tried hard to make her face smile because when she's working alongside me creatively she's feeling her very best.  I could tell she knew the pain and love and hardship I was trying to convey in the photographs, and like a soldier she became the subject of those photographs.   My dad even posed for one with his prosthetic leg beside him.  My parents are brave.

I don't want anyone to feel bad when they look at these photographs.  I want you to see strength and love, grit and family, loyalty and life.   This is what life looks like, too, sometimes.  Right there alongside the babies and the weddings and the young families.   And when it's all over, it was all beautiful, it was all perfect, and all we'll see is love.

momsmall001.jpg momsmall002.jpg momsmall004.jpg momsmall005.jpg momsmall006.jpg momsmall008.jpg momsmall011.jpg momsmall013.jpg momsmall017.jpg momsmall018.jpg momsmall021.jpg momsmall026.jpg

digg del.icio.us technorati 21 comments so far
(21) Comments Trackbacks Add A Comment Send To A Friend
buy_cialis says:

I like what you guys are usually up too. This kind of clever work and exposure! Keep up the amazing works guys I've added you guys to my blogroll.

(12.19.16 @ 01:59 PM)
buy_viagra says:

I like what you guys are usually up too. This kind of clever work and exposure! Keep up the amazing works guys I've added you guys to my blogroll.

(12.19.16 @ 01:59 PM)
for says:

I like what you guys are usually up too. This kind of clever work and exposure! Keep up the amazing works guys I've added you guys to my blogroll.

(12.19.16 @ 02:00 PM)
Laura says:

Thanks for the reminder that there is beauty in all stages of life, especially when viewed through a loving lens.

(12.20.16 @ 02:58 PM)
cheap_cialis says:

I appreciate, cause I found just what I was looking for. You have ended my 4 day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a great day. Bye

(12.20.16 @ 05:53 PM)
viagra says:

I appreciate, cause I found just what I was looking for. You have ended my 4 day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a great day. Bye

(12.20.16 @ 05:53 PM)
purchase_viagra says:

I've been absent for a while, but now I remember why I used to love this website. Thanks, I'll try and check back more frequently. How frequently you update your site?

(12.30.16 @ 12:27 AM)
cheap_cialis says:

I've been absent for a while, but now I remember why I used to love this website. Thanks, I'll try and check back more frequently. How frequently you update your site?

(12.30.16 @ 12:27 AM)
cialis says:

I've been absent for a while, but now I remember why I used to love this website. Thanks, I'll try and check back more frequently. How frequently you update your site?

(12.30.16 @ 12:28 AM)
Naomi Raiselle says:

Just beautiful. Reminds me of the ten years I spent taking care of my dad. Blasted my heart wide open. Thanks for sharing.❤️

(01.03.17 @ 10:43 PM)
Briana says:

Oh, Tara! These photos are fucking brilliant. I imagine it took awhile for you to get to that place of being able to bring your camera into the nursing home like this. This is so personal, and at least for me, it's often a real challenge to mix the real life stuff with what I Iove to create. Thank you deeply for sharing this story about your mom and her amazing attitude about life, despite all that she faces on a daily basis. This is truly inspiring on so many levels. Blessing and Peace to you and your parents. Thank you for this post. -Briana

(01.04.17 @ 06:29 AM)
Gretchen Gause says:

Your words are clear proof that you have that bravery too. What a beautiful gift. Life is so bizarre and small and yet so very big and beautiful. Much love.

(01.04.17 @ 10:00 AM)
Matt Simon says:

Tara,

This was incredibly moving - thank you for sharing. Love you!

-Matt

(01.04.17 @ 11:13 AM)
Barbara Chandler says:

Tara, how beautiful! Jocelyn sent along to me and I have passed on to Mary Buccafusca. I saw your Mom when my Mother was at Bay Path. The first time I was near the elevators and there was a crowd of folks waiting in their chairs to go up, I spoke to one of the nurses there about my Mom and all of a sudden I heard, "Barbara, Barbara Chandler", I turned and there was your Mom. I was blown away to think she knew me after so many years of not seeing each other. Remember your Mom went with me to Hawaii back in 1979 or 80...we had soooo much fun, figuring out how to save the money to go, leaving kids with folks to take care of, and this all started with Mary B and girl scouts!!! My does time march. You look wonderful and I love your work so much. Have a wonderful 2017 and thank you for doing this, we all need reminders now and then. Oh how she loves her daughters!!!

(01.05.17 @ 10:49 AM)
Tracy cohen says:

Just Wow!!!

(01.05.17 @ 11:59 AM)
generic says:

very nice post, i certainly love this web site, keep on it

(01.09.17 @ 01:41 PM)
viagra_alternative says:

very nice post, i certainly love this web site, keep on it

(01.09.17 @ 01:42 PM)
generic says:

very nice post, i certainly love this web site, keep on it

(01.09.17 @ 01:42 PM)
online says:

Muchos Gracias for your blog post.

(01.16.17 @ 11:51 AM)
online says:

Muchos Gracias for your blog post.

(01.16.17 @ 11:52 AM)
without says:

Muchos Gracias for your blog post.

(01.16.17 @ 11:52 AM)
Remember Cameron's house from Ferris Bueller's Day Off?  The cool one with the glass garage?  That's what the Arndt's house looks like.  After I gushed about their home for a full ten minutes after walking in, I got my camera out. :)  This family is so cool and talented and smart and gorgeous it's inspiring.  But since I'll never be any of those things it's inspiring in the way the Olympics are inspiring.  This is such a beautiful family and it's one of my favorite shoots of the year.  Enjoy.  and holy shit, THANK YOU !!!!!!!!!!!!
DanaSML001.jpg DanaSML002.jpg DanaSML003.jpg DanaSML004.jpg DanaSML005.jpg DanaSML006.jpg DanaSML007.jpg DanaSML008.jpg DanaSML009.jpg DanaSML010.jpg DanaSML011.jpg DanaSML012.jpg

digg del.icio.us technorati 5 comments so far
(5) Comments Trackbacks Add A Comment Send To A Friend
cialis_price says:

I loved your blog article. Really Cool.

(12.12.16 @ 03:09 PM)
viagra_price says:

I loved your blog article. Really Cool.

(12.12.16 @ 03:10 PM)
online says:

Regards for helping out, superb information.

(12.14.16 @ 12:04 PM)
viagra_online says:

Regards for helping out, superb information.

(12.14.16 @ 12:05 PM)
without says:

Regards for helping out, superb information.

(12.14.16 @ 12:05 PM)
Cuuuuute!!  CUTE! CUTE! CUTE BOYS!!!!!!!!!   I cannot stand how lucky I am to be invited into your beautiful homes and witness your gorgeous families!  And when I think of the Morrell family I'm just in awe.  They are such a loving and sweet and absolutely edible.  I loved these guys from the moment I walked in.  Thank you!! ENJOY!! LOVE!!
morrellsml001.jpg morrellsml002.jpg morrellsml003.jpg morrellsml004.jpg morrellsml005.jpg morrellsml006.jpg morrellsml007.jpg morrellsml008.jpg watsonsml009.jpg morrellsml010.jpg morrellsml011.jpg morrellsml012.jpg

digg del.icio.us technorati 0 comments so far
(0) Comments Trackbacks Add A Comment Send To A Friend
Markos and Tony are adorable twin boys and, in my opinion, they *both* get the award for Best Bedroom EVERRRR!  These two hockey playing, puppy lovin', sweethearts were so gracious and so very cool to me.  I loved celebrating them and it was a total creative collaboration the whole shoot.  Love me these boys...and Xena, their gorgeous puppy!!! xoxoox
argirosSML001.jpg argirosSML002.jpg argirosSML003.jpg argirosSML004.jpg argirosSML005.jpg argirosSML006.jpg argirosSML007.jpg argirosSML008.jpg argirosSML009.jpg argirosSML010.jpg

digg del.icio.us technorati 0 comments so far
(0) Comments Trackbacks Add A Comment Send To A Friend
Little Lyle and his mom and dad live right next door to his school and therefore his favorite playground.  For a family portrait this year we headed over to the cold and vacant school yard and chased each other around.  It was a 60 minute giggle fest.
watsonsml001.jpg watsonsml002.jpg watsonsml003.jpg watsonsml004.jpg watsonsml005.jpg watsonsml006.jpg watsonsml007.jpg watsonsml008.jpg watsonsml009.jpg watsonsml010.jpg

digg del.icio.us technorati 0 comments so far
(0) Comments Trackbacks Add A Comment Send To A Friend