There is something so magical about being a parent for the first time. Often, it is our desire to raise our precious, innocent child in such a way that he or she will reach a state of true happiness in adulthood. And yet, as first time parents we often have no clue how to go about it. So we launch ourselves into it with great enthusiasm and hopefulness; giving it our best shot…. Smothering our child with love, cuddles, kisses, smiles, songs, joyous expressions, terms of endearment. The list is endless really.
As I photographed this family I felt like the parent’s actions perfectly captured how I felt three years prior when I gave birth to my first son. Was I fearful of being a mom? Heck yes! But I was so full of love for this little child that I was bound and determined to do everything in my power to help this child succeed… In the best way I knew how. He was so perfect in his innocent little way and I kept asking myself how on earth was I going to parent to preserve this innocence? I still don’t know what I’m doing. Some days I feel like I succeeded. Other days I feel like I’ve failed. Some days I ask myself what did I get myself into? Sometimes I feel like running away. Some days I wish I could go back to day one, start over, and do it better the second time. Some days I’m so frustrated because what I thought would work just simply, isn’t. But mostly I stare at my oldest boy (and my youngest too) in pure amazement of how he has grown into a boy that can run, walk and have a full conversation with me. I am so blessed to have the opportunity to be a mother and wish everyone was lucky enough to have the same fortune as me.
The following poem was read on my wedding day and as I look at these photos, I feel like it perfectly embodies the subjects in this photography session as they navigate, together, the unknown territory of parenting.
Blessing of the Hands
“These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever.
These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future.
These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.
These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind.
These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes; tears of sorrow, and tears of joy.
These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children.
These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one.
These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.
And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.”
– Unknown author
It is my hope that you guys will continue to parent with as much enthusiasm as I was so honoured to witness and capture on that cold October day! Your little guy is so lucky….