I will prize this photograph forever:
I’m the old guy with the beret. I look like Adolphe Menjou, for Godsake. At the left is Jake, my firstborn son. In the middle is Ben, the second.
Ben is leaving in about two weeks to go live in southern Washington State, near Portland, Oregon. That is where his job is taking him. Somehow I always used to imagine we’d always be within driving distance, but it’s not working out quite that way, is it? Instead all three of us have acquired what is laughingly called A Life. Where we may want to go isn’t always factored into the results.
I didn’t see Ben all that often but he was nearby. Physical distance won’t change the relationship, just the potential for face-to-face. We’ll manage.
I like pictures like this. They are a marker, hardly fixed, but a moment in time. In this moment in time, Jake is 29 going on 30, Ben just turned 27, and I’m 64 (will you still need me?). It is hard for me to express the emotions inside me when I look at this. So I’ll make it a bit easier by putting in another one:
Right–my two weird-expressioned kids, with the weird albeit invisible Daddy behind the camera. They are fun, they have been fun, and they have been my greatest joy since I learned to appreciate and revel in the gift I have been given.