“When I was 26 weeks pregnant I was hospitalized for a condition called HELLP syndrome. My blood pressure was sky high and I was having raging headaches and nosebleeds. I was told that my liver and kidneys would soon shut down and I could die. I was not given an option to continue the pregnancy. My daughter Macy was delivered by Caesarean section weighing a pound and a half. She was a fighter. She had wonderful care and is today a healthy and strong 21-year old woman. Every time I read about another attempt to impose limits on decisions that should be made between a pregnant woman and her doctor, I think - that could be me. If my tiny fragile daughter had not survived, the operation to save my life in 1997 might in today’s rhetoric be termed a “late-term abortion.” Today, in some states, the decision to deliver my baby and save my life would not have been made by a doctor, but by a legislature. And it is likely that neither of us would be here.” - Christi Hayes, posting on Pantsuit Nation two weeks ago
Sonia Warshawski was born in 1925 in eastern Poland. During her teenage years, she survived three death camps: Majdanek, Auschwitz-Birkenau, and Bergen-Belsen. At Majdanek, through a peephole, she caught the last glimpse of her mother as her mother went to the gas chambers. Sonia was fifteen years old. One day at Auschwitz-Birkenau, to avoid being sent to the chambers, she hid in a pile of discarded prisoners’ clothes, holding her breath as guards poked the pile with their rifles. At Bergen-Belsen, as the British were liberating the camp in April 1945, she was shot through the shoulder. “I thought I was going to die,” she told me.
Today, at 93 years old, Sonia lives and works in Kansas City, running a tailor shop she opened with her husband some 38 years ago. She works six days a week. I had the opportunity to speak with Sonia last week, and she generously shared some of her story, which is also the subject of a documentary called “Big Sonia.”
Whenever anyone asks me who my dream client is, I always say, “AARP”. If you don’t follow their Instagram you totally should ( @aarpphoto ). I was overjoyed to photograph Nick and Lita for the August | September issue and even more delighted that this didn’t have to happen mid-air 😳. Thanks to Katrina Zook for making dreams come true, Violaine Bernard for the last minute retouch, Mark Borosch for the strong 💪🏽, and Lindsey Mataccheiro for hair/💄
#Repost @aarpphoto with @get_repost
Flying into Friday with longtime AARP members Nick and Lita Oppegard! The two have been married 41 years, flying the whole time. They are pictured here in their 1929 biplane. Of their travels Nick said, "Just because we're older doesn't mean that we are in any way less capable of savoring and sharing grand adventures." Catch these two in our August/September issue. Photo by @mbkoeth