Something interesting happened to me a few weeks ago, something that hasn’t happened to since I’ve lived in Houston, over 6 years now. I finally felt home. Houston’s always been “that city I moved to” after college. I didn’t know if it was home or if it was just a stepping stone in life. I may move again, but Houston became home in the middle of this shoot when I asked this little boy’s mom, Darci, how she found me.

She said someone “Misti” had referred her back from around “Abilene”, my hometown. After we ran through a list of last names, this explosion went off in my brain, how my worlds collided. That I could be sitting in the heart of Downtown Houston with this perfect young boy, “all” boy as he picked up rocks and dirt, even came out of a crack in the sidewalk with a real rollie pollie. My heart softened so much in an instant. It made me miss home, the simplicity of quiet roads, normal lives. I caught the bug here in the big city, thinking life is a push and shove, haul and bear down game of just getting through it all.

I felt tears swell as Darci continued to talk of life in Lubbock and we went on to talk about the country, open air through window curtains. There is something about the country that will never leave me, no matter how long I’m gone, no matter how deep the rabbit hole of the city goes for me. I think fate ran me into this family and made me sit to watch this young boy, so happy to find a stick, a rock, a rollie pollie and be fearless of anything going on around him. I found myself beyond words in gratitude that Misti would think to refer me as a photographer in Houston, so far from home. This family brought home to me there, at Discovery Green, downtown Houston, grounded me and as odd as it could sound, it all made sense that hour I was so lucky to have with them. The insides of who I am sparked up and I enjoyed the moment, instead of thinking about the next ten things I needed to do. I don’t do it enough for some reason, here. This photoshoot, Darci her family, this precious boy with a brother on the way, was like home standing in front of me. Houston’s always been a world away from a life I once had, running around in college, playing basketball, working at my degree, working at Abuelo’s to make rent. Here in Houston I dream big and I capture lots of them in this camera. None mean as much as the grounded emotion of living life for the life itself. I’m just speechless when it collides and home becomes Houston through the people in it. By the way, he’s 4 years old 🙂

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