My father-in-law is nearly 81, and holding on to his way of living, taking care of his appartment, fending for himself, and looking after his ailing girlfriend as well. Walking to her appartment everyday to help her with the daily chores, to do the necessary errands, and to make sure that she takes her medication properly.

Walking back to his place in the evening, doing his own housework, laundry, sweeping and shoveling, choosing to maintain two households instead of moving in with his girlfriend, holding on dearly to his independance.

Stubbornly holding on to his dignity, refusing to use the cane that could help him when he gets the occasional bout of dizziness. Choosing to do all this hard work instead of going to a retirement home, holding on fiercely to his pride and autonomy.

Taking care of his son and grandsons, always making sure that they are well and happy, that they have everything they need. Holding on lovingly to his fathership.

Going on through life, with the constant pain in his joints, the weight of all those years pressing down on his shoulders and on his heart, just holding on…

Focal length 55mm
Aperture f/5,6
Shutter 1/13 sec.

Shot in manual mode, in natural light from the window
Nikon D60
AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f3.5-5.6G VR

Featured in the group Oh so Emotional on December 16, 2009


low, wisdom, aged, elderly, conceptual, 80, blackwhite, working, key, hands, age, wrinkles, hold, citizen, spots, senior, concept, elder, experience, knuckles, aging, holding, liver, wrinkled, old, joints, white, frail, philosophical, black, people, hard, philosophy, man

Freelance photographer specializing in pet photography as well as maternity and newborn portraiture.

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  • Wendi Donaldson
    Wendi Donaldsonover 5 years ago

    Such dignity and pride in his story, Johanne. A man to look up to and treasure. Amazing grace.
    Beautiful image you’ve captured…and now I’m all veklempt!

  • Aaaaw, thank you Wendi, this is a very touching compliment! Dignity, pride… and stubborness. Yep! The man is 100% Scottish after all. ;-) Can I offer you a tissue?

    – Johanne Brunet

  • Digitalbcon
    Digitalbconover 5 years ago

    This is amazing Johanne!! Powerful, both image and description!! Very well thought out composition and the B & W is just perfect!! Well done my friend!! Instant favorite!!

  • Thank you Blair so much for this sweet comment Blair! I really appreciate your support and encouragement, they are are great source of motivation. :-)

    – Johanne Brunet

  • Carole Brunet
    Carole Brunetover 5 years ago

    I know this strong man and the story is just the right way to describe your father-in-law. Full of pride. When I am beside this man I feel like he his very tall and his presence fill the whole room. Great capture, it speaks from itself.

  • Thank you, ma soeur! What you say is so true. Everyone has the impression that he is a tall man, but in fact, he is not. Average height, not more. He has such an imposing personality, that he projects this impression of being a tall and big man. :-)

    – Johanne Brunet

  • Ursula Rodgers
    Ursula Rodgersover 5 years ago

    That is a wonderful image and story Jo! His strong spirit is what keeps him from giving up his independence I am sure. I’ve always thought that such strength of spirit is so important, especially when you get older.

  • Thank you Ursula! I only wish that I’ll be as strong, spiritually and physically, when I get to that point. :-)

    – Johanne Brunet

  • Vikram Franklin
    Vikram Franklinover 5 years ago

    This is an amazing pic by itself. With the story it takes on a new character – Great pic Johanne – I’m sure your Farther-in-law would like it too.

  • Thank you Vikram! I don’t know if he will like it, he kept wondering why on earth I would want to take pictures of his old man’s hands … :-)

    – Johanne Brunet

  • Victoria Kidgell
    Victoria Kidgellover 5 years ago

    A stunning shot by itself, but like Vikram says, the story just gives it even more depth and emotion. A very moving shot and description. A fitting tribute to someone who is obivously a marvel of a man.

  • Aaaww! Thank you so much Victoria for this sweet and kind comment.

    – Johanne Brunet

  • lucin
    lucinover 5 years ago

    Holding on lovingly to his fathership. It is wonderful that his story is told. You are a fine daughter in law.

  • Oh, thank you so much Lucin! He’s a fine man, so I try my best to produce something representative of him. :-)

    – Johanne Brunet

  • en-joy
    en-joyover 4 years ago

    What a special person he must be!

  • Taylor Sawyer
    Taylor Sawyerover 4 years ago

    Congrats on your feature! You are now invited to join the Best of DETERMINATION Challenge!

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