First and last LONG blog… life to exciting to have to bookmark your place. xoxo
I remember this picture like it was yesterday. I was in a hurry… nothing new there. I can’t remember a time I wasn’t running late or cutting one thing out to almost be on time for another. It was 8:57 in the morning. Carter’s preschool started at 9:00 and approximately 6 minuets away if everything went just right. In reality it probably was more like 9 min but in my head everything doesn’t take as long… I will command the day to go perfectly and work out just as I had planned…. then the day hits and life rolls in. Anyways back to the picture. I was 12 steps ahead of my little man and was cheerfully calling his name (with my outside voice) to hurry up (the cheerful part was just in case one of my neighbors was talking out the trash and could hear me).
As I approached the car Carter was no where to be found. I turned my head and will never forget my what my eyes saw and my heart felt. It was one of those moments that captured my heart and forever changed my world. My 4 year old son was tenderly cupping one of our gerber daisies and literally smelling it. He then noticed I was watching him. He looked at me grinning from ear to ear and said “Mommy, we have a new baby flower and I think he will be ready to be smelled tomorrow. Come over here Mommy, don’t they just smell so beautiful”.
The rest of the day is a blur. I would like to assume that I did very important things that day but I don’t remember. I do however remember that my 4 year old son taught me to take time and smell the flowers. There will always be something that needs to be done, picked up, dropped off, cleaned, completed or taken care of… but if I can’t remember what it was ,how important was it really? As for me and my little guy… we smell the flowers. We look for the small budding flowers and anxiously wait for the babies to be born so we can smell them too.
I love taking pictures that define moments in my life that taught me priceless lessons and have made me who I am. I am me…. I am Tyler’s wife and Carter’s mom. And if I could be anything in the the entire world… that’s what I would be. I wouldn’t change my title but I would certainly change about a million other things. I would be patient, I would be more understanding, I would know how to relax, I would like to take naps (I can’t remember the last time I EVER took one). Sleep bores me. I would learn how to cook (a little), I would know how to turn my brain off and stop idea’s from racing around in my head. I wouldn’t get anxiety listening to my voice mails (I can pretend like I listen to them… but I just call people back instead). I would not hang up the phone before the other person says good bye….I hate goodbyes so I always rapid fire hangup and never hear the very end.
I moved away without telling people when to avoid the hard good byes and all the pretending like nothing will change. I would learn how to say no… but just sometimes because I truly love to help others. I would be more focused, listen more and talk less. I am currently reading a book called Quiet…. but hold little hope of it actually helping. But if I could erase all of my bad habits and shortfalls then I am not sure who I would be. I think life is about being you but always refining who you want to be. Each day I challenge myself to try a little hard to be a little better. I like to keep things simple. Life is overwhelming, hard, too much and really hard sometimes and sometimes it even gets harder that that. But life is also amazing, magical, priceless, happy, invigorating, full of love, miracles, excitement and the reason I wake up with a smile on my face. Life isn’t about what happens to you… it’s about how you deal with what happens. It’s about falling down and getting back up. Life is about being scared to do something and doing it anyway.
I wake up feeling like I can conquer the world and go to sleep seriously wondering what I even did all day besides rush, yell and wish things had gone better. And then the next day begins.. I wake up refreshed (or not if I only slept a few hours which is really normal for me) write my list and prepare to conquer the world….. and repeat….. and repeat… the end… or maybe just the beginning because I am really starting to figure some things out.
So I am the girl who takes pictures. I have a secret fear of forgetting things that matter but am too lazy to actually write them down. I love capturing moments. Sure… some of them are staged. Like the time Carter was a wiseman in a church christmas play. I wasn’t convinced he would even show up on stage so I quietly reminded him that Santa was watching and if he didn’t do a good job Santa would skip our home. Needless to say he showed up. I can pretend like I don’t pull these stunts often but I am sure I do. I have wiped away tears and coaxed (ok… demanded) Carter to smile so I could capture the perfect shot. I delete pictures if I don’t like how I look even if it no other pictures were taken. I have framed pictures that I look good in even if someone else does not. I am guilty of always assuring my buys that “this will be the last one” but quickly break my word if it isn’t just right.
No matter how amazing my picture is the “moment” the “why I took it” or what I did is what is engrained in my mind. And I guess that’s what inspired this blog. What you see is what you get…. or not. We all have highs, lows and a lot of in betweens but I think living life to the fullest is just keeping it real. Thats what provoked my silent social media strike. I didn’t post or log on for over 6 months and didn’t feel like I missed out. No judgment attached… to each there own. In fact I got more from calling a good friend to see how they were doing then just viewing her pictures would have ever given me. I don’t want a friendship to be like a book. I want it to be real… talk, listen, laugh, cry and update on the things that matter not just the fancy trips and perfect sunsets. I wanted to take pictures for me and not to “show” people who I am. What I failed to realize is that taking pictures is who I am. I have always taken a million pictures. I wished for a camera when I was 8. I took rolls and rolls of film…. but only developed a handful of them. Shortly following my basic Kodak camera came the best christmas present ever… my very first digital camera. I had to convince my sister to combine her Christmas wish with mine because it was too expensive for Santa to just bring to one child. I am not certain my sister ever took a picture with it but the year before she left our power wheel on the street and someone stole it so she owed me one. And so started my obsession with taking a picture to capture a moment.
Not much has changed. My drawer is full of every iphone I have ever owned. I wouldn’t dream of selling them because they hold my life in them… Carter’s first smile, my sister’s wedding day, the birth of all my sister’s boys, Carter’s first plane ride and the list goes on and one. I bet I average printing 1 of every 100 pictures I take. But I love them… I love them all…. all 13,573 of them (that’s only my current phone) I have too many memory cards to count and my video camera memory is full because I have never transferred them to my hard drive. It’s inefficient, wasteful, doesn’t make sense and is pretty ridiculous but it’s me.
I see a picture as colorful journal full of my ever changing fast paced pretty crazy life. My pictures remind my mind the things that my heart must never forget… my people.. my memories… my trails and most importantly the MILLION lessons I have learned and continue to learn along the way. No matter how hard I try to just enjoy the perfect picture…. the only thing I see is why I took the picture and what it meant to me along the way. AGH… WHY CAN’T I JUST ENJOY THE PERFECT PICTURE AND SEE IT FOR WHAT IT IS… A PICTURE.. after all thats what Facebook is for right? Show everyone why our life is perfect and how happy we are.
Well today it stops…. if a picture is worth a million words then my pictures are going to stop being silent and talk. If I had posted the picture of Carter smelling the flower then you would have glanced at it and maybe thought cute… or she posts too much… or pretty flower or if your really being honest you may have been looking in the back ground to see if my lawn was mowed or what my house looks like but not today….
My picture says: I get too wrapped up in life and caring what other’s think. I don’t yell in public but am quick to do it at my home. I am not patient and don’t plan ahead ……BUT TODAY I took time to learn what my sweet son already knows… it’s the simple things in life that make it amazing. I actually smelt the flower! We are not perfect…. or even close to perfect but as soon as we stop staging our pictures and start being real (really happy, sad, confused, excited, scared, home sick or what ever it is we are feeling that day) then we can together one colorful picture at a time learn from each other and feel normal for just having an average day and never changing out of our sweatpants). Life is hard but most days are pretty good. The end…. or just the beginning.
I have no idea if he was smelling gerber daisies… I know nothing about flowers so I took a very uneducated guess. I could have looked it up but details bore me. But it’s all in the details and I was painting the picture for how precious the moment was. I have the ability to help my mind justify things for the greater cause.
I have NO desire to learn how to cook. Never have, never will. In fact I hate it when my home smells like food.
No pictures where staged in writing this blog. HOWEVER I AM NOT ABLE TO PERSONALLY GUARANTEE THEY NEVER WILL BE…. just kidding 🙂