May 22, 2018

 

Illuminating Family, Reframing Teen Parenthood. Opening Reception. May 17, 2018

The opening was amazing! Thank you everyone who came to the show! And thank you so much to everyone who helped me pull this tremendous body of work together! To all of my teen families. To my own family, my boys, my sisters, all of my parents. Thank you Aaron, for being my biggest fan. To Lenore, my brilliant curator. To Catherine, my fabulous editor. To my best friend, Meghan, for being there for me, holding the things I can't, yet, and for coming in for the opening. To Marisa, for flying up for the show. To Cousin David, for helping me frame everything and for always being generous and teaching me how to have compassion for myself. To Adam, for helping me find the courage to be my authentic self. To Sandy for supporting me through this whole process. To the Paragon Gallery for choosing to show this body of work. To Kurtis and Lane who hung the show. To Dominic who has been a huge support. To Pushdot, for the gorgeous prints. To Mary, for always supporting this project, always! To Peggy for the fantastic graphic design. To Christa, for teaching me all that I know about Yoga. Thank you to all of my friends for the support, love and encouragement. It really does take a village, I could not have done this without my village. Thank you! (If I forgot to thank you, please know you are not forgotten - just yell at me and I will add you to the list!)

I am still taking it all in. The opening was better than I dreamed it would be. So many of the participants came, it was incredible to see them in the space, with their photos, with all of the other teen parents. A dream come true! The stories that everyone wrote brought people to tears, the stories touched everyone. I was in a state of complete overwhelm for the entire night, through the next days. I am slowly taking it all in. So much to process, so much to learn. I know there are layers I haven't even touched upon yet. 

I must remember that opening a show is an exhausting experience, so next time I will be prepared. I was completely wiped out. Today is the first day since that I feel almost completely myself. It is hard for me to wrap my mind around the fact that this show is the culmination of three years of work. And, it is so hard to not think, "What's next?". This gets to settle into my emotional, mental, psychological world, then, when the time is right, I will know what is next. 

Thank you, everyone! Love, Eden

 

May 12, 2018

 

Isabelle and Aaliyah. Sisters. Illuminating Family, Reframing Teen Parenthood. May 12, 2018

Zulay! The very first moment I met Zulay, she gave me a gigantic hug. Her heart is huge and wide open. She is one of those people who exudes love and I love being around people like that, like Zulay. These beautiful girls are her daughters. Zulay was 17 when she found out she was pregnant. That was a long time ago, she has been through so much, she has endured a lot, but she continues to rise to greatness. Her family is beautiful. She owns her own business. She has also been so supportive of me, which makes me feel so good. I think she is absolutely lovely. 

Aaron and I brought everything to the gallery today. There were two, young men there, they took awesome care of us.! All I had to do was put the photographs and stories where I want them, they did the rest! It was amazing!

The show is in the gallery, everyone!!!  I have been working on this for three years and I'm totally freaking out because the walls are covered with my work and your stories and it's like I hung my heart on those walls. It's been an incredible journey, meeting all of you has brought me so much happiness. I loved meeting all of you, making connections, building community. It's my favorite. It's all about love. And kindness. And compassion. And breathing. 

Five days until the opening! Unbelievable! I will be doing a lot of yoga breathing, meditating and using my mantras. 

And, I will see you at the Paragon Gallery on May 17th! 4:00-7:00 PM. 815 N Killingsworth St. There will be food and drinks! Please bring your family and your friends! This is a celebration!!! Kids are welcome, mine will be there, too! 

Love, Eden

May 11, 2018

 

Melanie Then and Now. With Her Mama, Vanessa. Illuminating Family, Reframing Teen Parenthood. May 11, 2018

You already know how much I love Vanessa and Melanie. Look at Melanie at 1 year old and now at 3. She is completely glamourous. Vanessa and Melanie came to my house recently. Melanie made me carry her up the stairs and she made Aaron carry her down the stairs. She is sassy and smart as heck. I met Vanessa when Melanie was a tiny, tiny baby, a newborn. Actually, I might have met her right before Melanie was born. Either I met her at that time, or I dreamed I met her. I hope Vanessa, Melanie and their family will come over and swim with us this summer, that would be so much fun. 

When I went to Vanessa's new apartment for our second photo shoot, she and Melanie made brownies. Vanessa and I talked and talked while the brownies were cooking. Melanie did her own thing, but would come in and visit with us every now and again. She introduced me to her watermelon that she had named Pig. (I think Pig might be a character from Moana, she is really into Moana). 

I have very big news for all of you. Everything is framed. All of the stories are ready. Tomorrow we are going to the gallery to hang the entire show. I can hardly wrap my mind around what is happening. I have spent so many years working on this and it is happening tomorrow, then the opening on Thursday. I am so excited! I hope everyone feels how much love I have for all of the people that have joined me in this endeavor. That is my hope. That there is a lot of love. 

Six days until the opening! I will see you at the Paragon Gallery on May 17th! 4:00-7:00 PM. 815 N Killingsworth St. There will be food and drinks! Please bring your family and your friends! This is a celebration!!! Kids are welcome, mine will be there, too! 

Love, Eden

May 3, 2018

 

Emily and Brooklyn. Illuminating Family, Reframing Teen Parenthood. May 3 2018

Say hello to the cutest mom and kiddo, ever! The first time I met this beautiful duo was at the Teen Parent Services celebration of the seniors graduating. Brooklyn mesmerized me! She is absolutely the most adorable child. After that initial meeting, Emily and I arranged a day and time for me to come to their house to do their photo shoot. Emily and Brooklyn live with Emily's mom. Her mom is a huge source of comfort and support. 

I love that shy smile. 

This session was a great example of how the families that I collaborated with welcomed me into their homes and their lives with open hearts. I was so grateful and inspired by how warm, honest and open both Emily and her mom were. I feel so fortunate that Emily trusted me with her photos and her story. 

You will meet this fabulous family at the show! Brooklyn is now 4 years old, so big! I hope I recognize her. 

See you at the Paragon Gallery on May 17th! 4:00-7:00 PM. 815 N Killingsworth St. There will be food and drinks. Bring your kids, mine will be there! 

Love, Eden