Last night Fraser was looking through some old photo albums as he likes to do from time to time. He came across some photos of when he got his first black eye as a toddler and he thought it was very funny. I remembered that I did a scrapbooking page on it years ago and went and got out one of the albums for him to see. He was amazed with all of the scrapbooking pages about himself and now that he is at school and can read so well he loved being able to read all that I had written about him. When he finished looking through the album he said to me
“Mummy, that was so great. Can you make some more albums of me now that I am a big boy”.
This is where the happy/sad bit comes in. I was so happy that I had spent all of that time making those albums to have that moment where he discovered them and loved them. But at the same time I wanted to cry because life has taken such twists and turns now and there is just no more time for scrapbooking. And this makes me really sad. As with everything in my life, when I like to do something, I am all out, full steam ahead, obsessed, living and breathing whatever my passion is. But the one thing I have discovered about myself is I can only have one passion in my life or I lose my focus. It was why I had to pack the scrapbooking supplies away (and man were there alot of supplies, hehehe). I couldn’t concentrate on the photography business if part of my head was in scrapbooking and vice versa.
The other sad thing I discovered as I lay on the couch long after he went to bed, flicking through the pages and reading all of the journalling, was that I’ve stopped capturing my children’s everyday lives and writing about the smallest things that make me smile about them. Scrapbooking is the most amazing gift you can give your children. It made me really examine my feelings and express them on paper everyday. I did most of the scrapbooking when Fraser was a challenging toddler and writing my most positive thoughts about my boy and our relationship really helped me focus on the good parts when often the days were filled with challenges (you know how little boys can be). I am saddened that I now spend my life (and too much of it) capturing other people’s children, trying to find out who they are and stopping time for other families, and yet I often don’t have the time or the energy to do the same with mine. I am scared I will look back on these years and be so sad that I was forgetting to capture what was most important. My children! And although I occasionally journal about the kids on the blog, it’s usually a funny story and not always my true loving feelings about them. And where have the days gone where I would take a whole roll of film a day (much to the Singing Chef’s disgust, as well as the bank balance). That camera feels like work mostly now so I tend not to bother picking it up, or if I do I feel like everything needs to be perfect, after all I am a photographer right?
So I went to bed and had a little cry (am having another little one as I write this) and vowed to do better. To capture them every week and to write about them often. I definitely don’t want to feel sad like this again, I don’t want regrets so I’m going to try to to do better. There is still no time for scrapbooking, but I am going to make time for photos and writing.
I love you kids, I show you everyday with my actions and words, but now I have to try to show you in ways that are visual and will last into the future to reinforce all of the actions and words.