Our Story Begins:
Taking Stock Of The Moments
We talk a lot about how hard it is to face the daily grind as a parent. We talk about the meals, the laundry, the stress, the taxiing kids to events, the arguments, the “NO’s,” the tantrums . . . all of it making us feel like we’re workhorses and not really parents. I think this might very well be where the phrase “time flies” comes from. We spend so much time running around that we forget that amazing things happen every day.
I started keeping a camera around – ever the news photographer – and I’m glad I did. For me, it’s not the portraits that mean so much, it’s the silly little moments.
That picture up there in the header, I snapped that in an instant. I was in the middle of 10 things, including dinner, when I heard from behind me: “Daddy…lookit me!” Lo and behold my toddler twin had put himself in the laundry. It may be the cutest picture I’ve ever snapped.
Not long after his brother was laughing so hard he was hyperventilating. I couldn’t resist snapping a picture.
My girls, when in Dublin, Texas, decided to act like they were on the stage. I love how happy they are.
Since their Mom passed away in 2011, so many people start to think that those funny, happy, sweet looks go away.
But this is three of those kids at a baseball game this last summer. They’re laughing their heads off and screaming with the crowd.
And last picture…this is them . . . over the summer with their infant cousin. That look is joy, folks, serious, complete, joy.
Related: Our Story Begins: A Thousand Words
I bring this up and show you these photos because . . . it’s easy to lose that joy. We can get lost wandering in the trees and forget that these kids see wonder, adventure and loveliness all around them. We tend to get buried in the routine and the minutia of the day and forget those tiny things that make us giggle.
I had a hard time in the last few weeks, as I started delving into the dating world again, trying to tell women just what separated me from others. I have to look in the mirror often times to remind myself that I’m not a kid anymore. I do cartoon voices with the kids and resort to tickling my son when he sits next to me. I quote lines from Monty Python and the Holy Grail along with singing Christmas Carols in July. I may be aging but I certainly don’t act my age.
I never thought of having kids as making me grow up. More responsible, certainly, more grown-up? How? I read books called Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus and Fox in Socks. I am surrounded by cartoons and family movies. Do I crave the company of an adult? Oh . . . God . . . Yes! Do I always act like one? Of course not!
If I acted like I was an older man, staring down the halfway-point of my life, I might miss all those moments. The fact that I embraced, with my children, that life is forward motion . . . but you can stop for awhile, means I got to see and enjoy those moments up there. The one thing missing from many of them? My face in those pictures. I’ve gotten better about allowing myself in them so that those pictures can remind my kids of these memories, too.
Those moments, you see, are priceless.
What about you? Do you take the time or are you surrounded by so many activities you miss these little moments?