If you were to glimpse all the places we go in photographs alone, you would believe we rarely leave the threshold of our home. From the time the girls were babies, all most all of the pictures (short of a few beside the Christmas tree) are taken of them on the inside of the house by the door or on the front step. You would gather that we are very, very proud of those doors.
Somewhere along the way I didn’t make the time to get my badge in “mom taking lots of pictures” probably because my husband is only vaguely cooperative in me taking them with him and I adapted to a less is more picture philosophy long before the kids came. However, that all changes once they arrived. There are mornings that they wake up and I swear they grew overnight, their cheeks a little less round, their hands less gummy and an inch of so taller. So I take as many pictures of them as I possibly can remember to do (an amount that varies greatly dependent on how much coffee I have had upon waking).
A few years ago, at the high school graduation of a beautiful woman who I used to babysit, someone who I worked for turned to me and said simply “take lots of pictures, it goes by so fast”. I remember thinking that I didn’t just want the pictures, I wanted to be there fully present in each moment so that I could remember it all. What I failed to know then is that I would still need the prints. Because memory has a funny way of softening the lines between each of the days or months and making a composite of “when they were babies” or “what they wore on the first day of…” or even, in my case, “when you were on the cusp of being skinny but still thought you could lose twenty pounds”.
But back to the doors. I may not remember everything, or even to pack a spoon in my kids lunchboxes on the days I send along applesauce, but I remember that they won’t stay little forever. Which is why, just before we leave, when we are on our way to make new memories and learn new things, I corral the kids once more (and my husband and the dog too if I am feeling up to a real challenge)and try to capture the moment forever.