Thursday, April 28, 2016

This You,That You

I told you once that this is one of my favorite photos of you. When you asked why I didn't give a clear answer, maybe because I, myself, didn't quite know why. I only knew that the photo made me feel proud of you, made me remember you - as if I'd forgotten - and it captured you, the essence of you.

It occurred to me some time later that the picture was familiar, and I thought maybe that's why I loved it so much. But familiar why?  I looked for the reason in the only place I knew to search. It's here. In this picture from your 1st year baby book.

Same face! I remember when I snapped this shot of you as a baby I was laughing. It was one in a series of photos I took as you argued, mostly in babble, for control of the TV remote. There you were, this little pee wee, against your big, strong daddy with his giant hands, making your case, pulling, smiling sweetly, threatening tears. You must have worked for a good ten minutes, which in baby time is an eternity, until you got him to give up. (I suspect he intended to give up all along; you've had your daddy wrapped around your finger since the moment you arrived.)

In the photo above, you are steeling yourself for a live performance at the Abbey. You were having  a hard day, if I recall, and you were setting yourself away from everyone to get ready, to prepare because there was a task at hand and your focus had to be turned away from your own needs and to the job in front of you.

Shortly after both photos were taken you were smiling, gregarious, charming - your usual self - your public self. I love that you, the hugging, funny, kind-to-everyone you.

But I also love the you in these photos. The determined you, the hard-working, self-sacrificing, undeterred by 'no' you.  This is as much you as the other and I so admire and respect this you, as this you works in the background so the other you can be out in front. No certificates for this you, although we know the truth. This you is truly remarkable.

As you head off into your adult years, as in all the years before, I encourage you to seek adventure, to taste new things, know yourself and take the risks that make sense for you, and a few that don't (as long as it's reasonably safe to do so). And as you walk further and further away from the baby in that picture, remember that she was a little force, who's become quite the power, and there is no limit to where she can go.

It'd also be great if you'd leave your dad and me the remote for the TV. It's been eighteen years. Cut us a break, would you?

Happy Birthday, Blue. We love you.

No comments:

Post a Comment