Bay Area Wedding Photographer Gabriel Harber » Fun, Artistic, Joyful Photography that is Real and Full of Stories

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Kathleen + Daniel | Piedmont | Piedmont Park Engagement

I love hearing about how people met, how engagement proposals went down, and little bits about the lives of the people I work with. As someone who lives with his partner, fiance’, baby momma, love (my wonderful lady, Loretta), and has two kids (both planned), I always appreciate it when the people I work with have embraced alternative ways of ordering their love and life. I like a good story and I am curious about how people make their relationships work. Because, let’s face it, relationships take work. All this said, I don’t often gush or write a whole lot about people’s personal stories on my blog. I tend to feel that my pictures can do the talking. But sometimes a good story needs some words. So, I am going to try to share a little more, when it feels right. Here goes.

Kathleen, Daniel, and I had a great walk through Piedmont Park last weekend. We started off at a cafe on Piedmont Ave and then progressed to the park. We talked about work, relationships, love, kids (one of my current favorite topics), life, and death. Our conversation found its way to a story about Daniel going to the hospital for back pain, and not leaving for 3 months. This was a couple of years ago. He was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive lymphoma (a form of cancer). He received chemotherapy that lasted days, shots of chemo in his spine, bone marrow biopsies, and other medications. And then, shortly after he was released from the hospital, he broke out in shingles that spread into his ear and paralyzed half of his face. He went back to the hospital, and thankfully recovered from this too. He survived all of this, and has been cancer free since 2011. Looking over the pictures from our shoot, I couldn’t help but wonder how Daniel’s sickness had affected their relationship. I can’t imagine how hard it must have been. There is a deep sweetness and tenderness between Kathleen and Daniel. I decided to write Kathleen an email and asked her about the experience and checked in to see if I could share a little bit of their story.

This is what she had to say, “The experience had a profound and lasting effect on our relationship, but it’s a little hard to describe exactly how. I would say we learned that, even at our weakest moments, we still have enough strength to care for each other. We learned that we can have a good time under any circumstances. We learned when to put on a brave face and when to just be sad or angry or afraid. We now carry the knowledge that we are incredibly strong together, and that we can support each other through whatever happens next.”

Thank you Kathleen and Daniel.

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