When I had my daughter, no one told me the heartache I would feel over the speed of her growth. That one day she would be a baby and when I blinked my eye, she would be a woman. Well, people did tell me and continue to tell me and I do my best to savor every single moment with her but it does not fail: they grow up too fast and it does not bring me joy. It just makes me cry.
Case in point, this beautiful young woman. I met her three years ago when she was a little girl; a baby, still a little sapling, just a sprout.
But now? Now when I get called upon to photograph her for her 11th birthday portraits at James G. Atkinson Park, there was no baby in sight. There was no little girl. There was only this mature, sophisticated, wise and worldly young woman whom I almost did not recognize. Completely independent, totally self-reliant, she is ready to take on the world and leave her nest behind.
As much as I want to rejoice in parenting that culminates in such a wonderful, polite, beautiful young woman who is on her way to becoming a productive member of society, I can't. Because this means that one day, that will be my daughter and I am not ready to let go!
Slow down, girls! Stay babies for just a little while longer! Like, the next hundred years?
But for those of you who did not just birth a child and who are not overwhelmed by motherly hormones, you can enjoy this beautiful young woman. Me? I'm just going to hug my babies even tighter and just hope that I can slow the sands of time.