I suppose when you only document your child’s current age a few days before they turn another year, it’s only fitting to wait another 12 months to document the next age, right? I was a little better documenting 17. We took these over 3 months before she turned 18. I also learned a valuable lesson. When taking your own child’s photos, bring along her friends and feed them afterwards. The mood is sooo much better. A few of my favs…
And since her friends were with us, I decided to document them together. Known as the triplets at school, these girls were all giggles.
I don’t know what my problem has been the past few years, but I’ve been horrible at making it a point to do yearly photos. And obviously I’ve been even slower to post them. Anyway, a month before EG turned sixteen (which was about 2 years ago), we did her fifteen year old photos…
Yesterday we decided to take a drive to Sunspot to the observatory there. I couldn’t find online if it was open, but I thought the drive would be nice, and we could at least see the observatory from the outside. Plus, the best views of the Tularosa Basin are from Sunspot and the drive there. Well, winding up the mountain made a backseat passenger feel carsick. The observatory was closed. You couldn’t even drive in to see it. And the best viewpoint of the basin along the road? Only Jeremy and I got out to look. It was not at all what I had planned for the day. I realized, though, that there was a point in time where a day like yesterday would have put me in a serious bad mood. Feeling responsible that we couldn’t see the observatory, burdened by the bickering from the backseat, wasting gas to drive nowhere. Over the years, though, and especially living with teenagers, I’ve learned to let those things go, because plans don’t always go smoothly. Sometimes you just have to make the best of the moment, and be responsible for your own attitude, because you can’t control the attitude of others.
In an effort to redeem our two hours in the car, we stopped at a local bakery for a cookie. I’ve always said chocolate makes everything better. Yesterday it sure did. Walk in a good attitude, and eat some chocolate today, friends.
Today my proud mom thoughts turn to my boy. Yesterday I got an email from Joshua’s school asking for photos since they are putting together a graduation slideshow. Joshua’s school journey has been anything but normal. He’s literally done every kind of school there is, I think…semi-private kindergarten to the public government school in South Africa to homeschool in America to public school in America back to homeschool in South Africa to a sort of homeschool taught by a real teacher (not me) in South Africa to private school to online school to finally ending with a charter school in Texas. He’s adapted to each one so easily. I stayed in the same school district with mostly the same kids from 1st grade until I graduated. I can’t imagine having to adapt to so much change, but he’s done it.
He finished high school early, back in November. They asked us if he wanted to participate in graduation in May. At the time, we weren’t sure where we’d be, so he opted out of donning a cap and gown. And here we are now, in the middle of a pandemic, where walking the stage isn’t even possible.
As I’ve looked back on photos of Joshua throughout his childhood, I am struck by how they’ve captured just who he is. This kid is hilarious and has a golden sense of humor. I say he’s like me in that. He says he’s not at all like me, because he’s actually funny. I have to laugh at the time he went to school dressed in a cardboard box or the time we were camping and he put on knit gloves and goggles to tend the fire. And though this boy of mine is totally content being an introvert, his sense of adventure is clearly evident. We’ve traveled the world with our kids, and Joshua’s always been one excited to experience it all.
As we close this chapter of high school and I get all nostalgic looking at photos filled with such beautiful memories, I feel a twinge of bittersweetness as we embark on the next season of life with an adult child. I’m also excited on the memories to be made in this new season.