I look at my parents through the lens as that of an adult who is now older than they were when they first arrived in the United States. Growing up in Paterson’s (NJ) Riverside section; in the shadow of New York City and Paterson’s declining industry and long forgotten silk mills. My family and I are first generation immigrants. My parents never openly chased the American dream, but they instilled in their children the value of hard work and were grateful for the opportunities as they became available. My father, Ramiro Giraldo has now lived in United States longer than he did in our native Manizales, Colombia. In 2013, I began photographing my parents and the neighborhood I was raised in. After more than thirty years, I wanted to know what kept my parents in Paterson. Was it lack of opportunity or pride of place? Or perhaps, the way familiarity offers both embrace and a choke hold. What keeps us in any one place for any period of time? The physical space, the things we hold dear, community? And within these communities, the blocks we grew up on, how that shapes and binds us. Through my parents and their environment I look at the things that created our immigrant experience. Through photographs I want to give them what they couldn’t achieve like so many other immigrant generations before them. Yet they endure. My work is about them as much as it is for them. I honor them and their lives.