Sunday, February 21, 2016

Project 52: Shot 8

A Child--Not Your Own--That is Special to You (February 20, 2016)

I had always told my mom that if I ever had a kid, I would give it to her to raise until it was ready for school at which point I would want it back. When I met my boyfriend a few years ago, his son was in pre-school. This timing did not escape my mother who pointed out that here was someone with a kid who was the perfect age for me. In the time since then, I have gotten to know this child and have witnessed first-hand how smart and sweet he is. I enjoy being around his dad and him (especially when it results in being able to cross an item off my bucket list.) Being in a relationship with someone who has a child has afforded me opportunities like the moment above and allowed me to finally come to terms with my decision to not have any children of my own.

Quite a few people have asked me about that decision. Yes, it was difficult to make at first, but making--and eventually embracing--it has led me to be a whole lot happier than I was before. One of the main factors in my decision was my relationship with my own step-dad. That alone has shown me that blood does not make one a parent. Being a teacher, one can't help but mentally compose a list of all the things one would or wouldn't do with your own kids. Being with someone who has a child has shown me how difficult it is to be a parent. For the record, the mental list still exists, but it's now tempered with the reality of all the day-to-day things that go into raising a child. I am thankful for the time I get to spend with this boy and his father and this photo only captures a small fragment of the happiness they bring me.

I'm starting to realize that this photo project is doing more than giving me a list of shots to take throughout the year: it's allowing me to capture the moments and people that are important to me.

Duh! I should have seen that coming when I first saw the list.

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