I'll Help You Hold On - Lifestyle Family Photography in Northern Kentucky and Cincinnati
I read a wonderfully sad blog post long ago about the last time a Mama washed her daughter’s hair. She was folding laundry, listening to her daughter sing in the shower, when she realized that her daughter no longer asked for her help to rinse out the shampoo. There had been a Last Time, and this Mama didn’t even realize it was already behind her. Y’all, I bawled, and I didn’t even have a baby of my own yet.
The story made such an impression on me that every so often, even years later, it still circles my mind. I think of it when I hold my ever-heavier toddler to my chest each night until he falls asleep. I think of it when it takes me four days to pound out a simple blog post because that toddler wants to crawl into my lap to sing the Itsy Bitsy Spider. I think of it when he brings me Brown Bear, Brown Bear — for the seventeenth time in one day, but oh, thank goodness, not The Last.
I think of it, too, when I am with your families. It’s so tempting to focus our cameras and our attention on firsts; on meeting new milestones, on watching for the next. But what happens to all the time in between? What about the moments that fill the everyday, the ones that are so easy to take for granted? For now, it is one of a hundred, a thousand, maybe a million… but when will it be The Last? The last time they ask you to help with their shoes? The last time you boost them to sit on your hip? The last time they reach for your hand on the stairs?
Maybe, like me, you think of this often and you remember to appreciate the moments in front of you now, hectic as they may be. Or maybe, like the Mama who wrote that blog post I read years ago, you will wake up and be blindsided by the heartbreaking truth of all the Last Times that slipped by without notice. Regardless, I am here to help you hold on. One day, when your practiced hands find that they are no longer busy with binkies and bruises and bath time and books, they might find the time to flip through the moments I shared with you from behind my camera and remember the younger years.
Remember the firsts, the middles, the lasts.
So for now, let me be your witness as you help them into their dresses for tea, whisper their favorite story a dozen more times, and savor the shape of that little hand that reaches for yours. For now, just hold on tight, Mamas. You never know when they’ll want to let go.