• Aperture: f/4
  • Focal Length: 200mm
  • ISO: 400
  • Shutter: 1/320 sec
  • Camera: NIKON D1H

Tuscaloosa, Alabama

The first time I photographed Aidan, he was 10 days old. Five months have passed and he looks more and more like his daddy every day.

When I look into his eyes, I remember so many nights shared among friends, candles flickering as we drank wine and talked about philosophy, theology, and literature. His father, Shawn, was part of that circle, along with Nicholas, Nicholas’ roommate Basil, Kevin, and myself.

I was in my early twenties, a pensive girl who couldn’t seem to find her place in the world. For the first time ever, I felt part of an elite brotherhood, a secret society of intellectuals. Over French bread, pesto, and gallons of cheap red wine, we forged a bond that continues today even though we have gone in different directions.

Nicholas and I now share a life together and enjoyed the pleasure of Kevin’s company just a few nights ago. Basil, who once planned to be a celibate monk, is married now and is pursuing the priesthood at St. Tikhon’s Orthodox Seminary in Pennsylvania. And then there is Shawn — a high school librarian, a husband, a father.

We don’t get together so much anymore. Jobs and responsibilities have a way of getting in the way. We see each other at church, share a meal from time to time. But every once in a while I find myself carried back to those days when I sat among four brothers, sharing dreams, debating philosophy, and walking that thin edge of inebriation where insight meets inanity and all is well with the world.

Those days are gone now, and I miss them. Our small fellowship has expanded and I am not sure how I fit in anymore. My days are filled with a haze of technology and minutia. My nights are sleepless and long.

There is no baby, and it is likely there never will be. I haven’t worked in three weeks and am starting to get that panicky “I’m never going to work again” feeling. Friday night will find me in Mobile with my family.

The road is open but I can’t seem to find the map. And I just feel so lost sometimes.

Music: Somebody by Connie Dover (lyrics)

Favorite Photos: “Light Surf” by Mike at Tidal-Pool-Reflections and “Golden Sky” by Dawn at Girl Inchoate

Words: “Dream” by Danielle at Celebrating Mediocrity

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