From Bikes To Cars: They Grow Up So Fast.

DSC_2672.JPGThese are my girls. The younger one in the long sleeves is actually my niece, but I helped raise her, like a daughter. She received all of her shots along with my son and daughter . I have photo albums of her growing up and I can tell you every cute little story about her when she was a baby. When she was little she’d call me Aunt Mama. I thought it was so cute. Her mother didn’t raise her. Therefore, I was the closet thing to being a mom to her.

 

One hot summer day, my daughter decided to help my niece ride her bike. This brought so much joy to my heart to see them riding together. My daughter always said she bugged her when they were growing up. She followed her where ever she went and wanted to be like her.  It was out of admiration ; she looked up to her like a big sister. Back then it seemed as if , my niece was so much younger than my daughter. In essence they are only 5 years apart. In lady years, this mean you are the same age. Females  have so many challenges to face, the commonality makes us the same age for sure.

I can’t believe how much time has past.  I taught my daughter to drive a car and now I’m teaching my niece. Where did the time go? It’s frightening , but I have to let them go. Being independent is part of life. It’s healthy and natural . Yet, it doesn’t erase the fears of letting them go out in the world. They have to face disappointments, just as I did.  No one is shield from it. Men will hurt them , jobs will reject them and people will let them down.

As a mother, I wish I could hold them and rock them, the way I use too.  Each night I’d give them a bath, give them a snack before bed and massage their faces and backs until they were sleep.  I remember the 3 am feedings and the early morning fevers.  There was the time my daughter was a newborn and she was so constipated. I took her to Kroger at 2am, in my jammies to get a jar of apple juice. She screamed the entire time in the grocery store.  I opened the jar  of juice in the store and placed one of her nipples on it, from her bottle. As she sucked on that juice, I got in line to pay for it. She was a huge infant. My angel was a 10 pounder at birth. God’s work is amazing the way HE enabled her to fit in my tiny body.

One of the fondest memories of my niece was her loud piercing screams. She’d startle me with the scream. The weird thing is, she’d scream anytime she was excited while playing. No one could play games with her unless they were ready for the scream. Some times I’d have her sit down and rest to calm down. The more excited she got, the more she would scream. It drove me nuts!

Now my little girls are no longer little. They are 20 and 25 years old.  I’m so proud of them. Yet, I cry when I see them drive away.

Maybe I Should be a Baby Photographer .

I love  shooting almost anything; I don’t mean with a gun. I have to watch how I say this in public. Once I’ve been on the phone in a coffee shop, talking to a client. I asked her if she wanted me to shoot the baby too.  Instantly I received stares from nearly everyone around me. I spoke up immediately, informing everyone that I’m a photographer. Then I received looks of relief  and spontaneous smiles. That’s a little side story that came to mind  as I gathered   my thoughts for this blog post.

Have you ever loved doing something ,but did everything in your power  to avoid it? It doesn’t make since but apparently it’s pretty common. For example: Have ever heard of  stories  where someone  always dreamt of owning a bakery, yet they go to law school to  to please their parents? Every semester that goes by, they are thinking of baking the pastries and all sorts of cupcakes. They’ve picked out the business name their and has practically written a mental business plan.  Everyone in their family is proud except them. Often times the story ends where they go off and start that bakery business  ( after practicing law) they’ve  yearned for.

Admittedly, I think this is my story.  I’ve always loved babies. Besides they are the sweetest thing on earth. Seriously, I can’t think of anything more precious than a baby. Many years ago I made an attempt to own a childcare center, but there were so much red tape involved ; it was nearly impossible to go for it. I owned some property that would have been perfect for a childcare center. It was located in an area that was inundated with businesses. I thought to myself , it would be a piece of cake to get approved. The city turned down the thought. For me it was a way to stop in and play in the infant room and get my baby fix. For some reason it didn’t seem to impress anyone with my idea.

Whenever I’d go out and shoot a wedding, I’d get a different response . There were people who admired me more for shooting a wedding. I decided to take on the challenge merely , because I was always told weddings aren’t a joke. I’d have to be organized and make sure the bride was completely happy . Anytime someone tell me it’s a challenge or that it’s something most photographers are afraid to try , I wanted to try it. The problem is , I’ve tried several years to get a consistent client wedding data base. For whatever reason it hasn’t worked for me. Each time I get stood up for a wedding portrait or turned down to shoot a wedding, I think to myself; maybe it’s not where God wants me to be. I love babies.

Photographing infants has it’s own challenges. Most often the newborn is sleeping while being placed in all typed of poses. The sky is the limit with creativity using props. They must be kept warm and have some sort of white soothing sounds. They’ll sleep throughout the session on a warm bottle of milk.  It takes tons of patience to get the perfect shot. You have several factors that can work against you. A fussy baby and excited parents. Most sessions will last 2-4 hours , because patience is a virtue. There are clothing changes and breaks for the baby that can prolong the session. At the end of the day, it brings me joy to know I was a part of creating the babies first real session. It would be treasured forever.

This year is my attempt to switch genre’s . Weddings are great and I’d shoot one in a heart beat. However,  when I browse the internet for baby photography; I imagine if it were me making those precious memories.

Have you ever avoided a true passion to please someone else?colin-maynard-231363.jpg