about two weeks ago I flew to san francisco with noelle to be there for my father’s last days. the photographs I took were not so much about documenting his final last two days (I feel like that is a pretty private time and also that is not really who he was in his life) but about the emotions of those five days – which ranged from grief, to guilt, to sadness, to laughter, and even to joy. I see everything thru a joy colored lens and I was grateful to be there with him, to have him be peaceful, to have him know he was loved, and grateful to have noelle pushing me back into life. the weather of those five days — sunshine, and water, and wind, and blue skies was a blessing.
[backstory: my dad had been sick all year and we had visited him over the summer a couple of times and knew his time was close. we made it in time for him to recognize us and know we were there. we visited him friday morning at hospice, drove to sf to collect nalu from his apartment near his college, came back and visited dad again. on saturday noelle and i spent the day there with my dad and step mom and my father died at 6:40 p.m./sunset on saturday night. on sunday morning I took noelle on a walk over golden gate bridge to celebrate life on our trip and remember my dad and then visited nalu in sf again and had dinner at my dads house in berkeley with my step mom and sisters. on monday, my brother’s birthday, we met my brother after he was released from prison, gave him the news of dad’s death, had lunch, and sent him over to a serious rehab program where we hope he turns his life around. noelle and I visited my dads house then drove up to the hills above berkeley for sunset. we arrived just at 6:40 p.m. and watched the sunset. on tuesday, we stopped at pier 39 for a quick visit before flying home to hawaii. noelle also got in a few swim practices to keep up her training for swim team. as I said, my images don’t document his days or his death.. there are no images of my sisters or my son and they were there. I just tried via point and shoot on film to capture the essence of how the trip felt to us and just shot what moved me.]
Thanks for sharing from your heart. May your memories replace your sadness with joy and peace.
shockingly beautiful. a long ache punctuated by bursts of brilliant joy.
Beautiful Wendy! So much love to you and your family
So sorry for your loss Wendy. Even without reading your words, you can tell such a range of emotions from the pictures, the love, loss, pain… and hope.
Wendy, these are such moving images. I actually looked at the photos before reading your commentary and I teared up, but also felt really happy…so, to say that you captured your feelings is an understatement. The fact that you can achieve this with a simple point and shoot camera is a testament to your talent as an artist. I’m so sorry for your loss.