I sat there and cried.
Time is a funny thing. It sneaks up on you, and while you are yet unsuspecting, it passes you by. I have never had a year fly by as fast as this last one, and somewhere in the midst of everything that was going on, my baby girl became a child.
Tonight I went through 18 months of digital photos which have been largely untouched on my hard drive. It’s sad, really. I am in the business of providing couples and families with incredible images and quality prints, and mine remain faceless in numerical form, stuffed away in folders on a hard drive.
I relived the last 18 months in brilliant color as I went through literally thousands of images i’ve taken of Mia in the last year, and I cried. Mostly happy tears, and a few of sadness that her life is racing by. I just want to scream “slow down! We have so little time!” but that is impossible. Instead, I am truly thankful that even in the middle of working as photographer, scheduling families, weddings, engagements, babies, and events that I made time to capture OUR moments.
As part of my resolutions for 2012, I am making her a scrapbook. Not a digital one, even though that is MUCH easier for me, but one made by hand and out of real paper prints. Somehow, that means more. It’s the tears, glue, and paper combined on a page that produce the most emotion, and one day Mia will know that her mom spent real time investing in her story, poring over paper prints with scissors and glue, pasting snippets of her life to a page.
My sister and I used to flip through the albums my mom created for us when we were kids. I remember being interested by our baby photos, but now that I have my own baby, those photos take on an entirely new meaning. I didn’t “get it” before, but now I realize that those aren’t just aging photos stuck to paper. That is my life, my infancy, my mom learning how to adjust to motherhood and being amazed by the little things- first words, first steps, first haircut. Tiny milestones, immortalized in colour and black and white and accented with notes, stickers, and so much love. When I look at those books now, they mean so much more to me than if I had just flipped on a computer and browsed the files.
Don’t let your memories just exist in cyberspace. It’s a much lonelier location than curled on a couch with a blanket, snuggled up beside a person who, in your heart, will always be your baby.