Emerson how can you be four. It doesn’t seem possible. You have been such a light and sometimes quiet the SPARK in our lives. Today we head to WOGA to celebrate with your friends. You are becoming quite the social bug – everyday asking for a playdate, or to “chase that car” as you see your friends parents drive them away from school. Yelling out the window to a little girl on the street , as we drive away from gymnastics…”WANNA COME TO MY HOUSE!!”
So this morning, as I lept out of bed to grab you pancakes – I secretly went to grab a pregnancy test. After a our recent IVF attempt, I was so certain that it would be positive that I decided to take the test on your birthday. What a cool thing to find out on your special day. DID I mention I was so sure it would be positive. I felt incredibly pregnant… so while chatting on the phone with my wonderful friend Jennifer, I went to go find the test – and snuck into the bathroom at Kroger… I was so sure… I stuck the test back in the box. Off I went to get your pancake and in the midst of Jens and my conversation – I grabbed the stick and peeked… negative… WTH…negative… seriously…. negative… no way … negative. And there it was … reality. smack dab in the face. Damn reality!! My dream world was so much more fun… planning nurserys, planning how to tell you kids, planning names, planning, planning, planning.
So now what to do with this very sad news on such an amazing day. With a river of tears sitting on my heart and lodged in my throat. I walked in the door with your pancakes and slathered the icing on the pancake to create a tower of deliciousness. Your smile.. your perfect smile .. as your heart filled with pride that you were now four. My throat throbbed as I held back the tears. I smiled and looked in awe at how amazing you are. We sang, you blew out the candles and we laughed when we realized that in my haste at the grocery store that I just bought the candles because of the colors -and how they were in fact magic candles that never blew out. You scowled at Hayden who tried to blow them out for you. “I can do it myself”- you exclaimed. The tears burned my throat.
I broke the news to Dan… the tears burned his eyes. It didn’t make sense.. we were both so sure.
Heres the thing- I love being a mother more then anything. You kids are my everything. I wish I could be the mom who was ready to reclaim her life – but I am not. I am sad that you are heading to kindergarten in a little over a year… even if you wish you could go to kindergarten now.
I cleaned up our pancake mess and jumped in the bath with you- It is the only way I can make sure that I get the soap out of your hair. You love this time with me. It is our time. I am trying to be present in this moment with you.. but it is hard. My throat is hurting…my heart is sad.
After you are done you hop out of the bath and I jump into the shower. I start to think of when you were born. I start to remember how desperate I was to have you. I start to remember… the tears begin to fall.
This week with you has been so special to me as you continue to teach me so much about being a mother. I love your enthusiasm for the simple things – the hug that knocked me over because I bought you a pink plastic table cloth. “FOR ME… THANK YOU MAMA!!!!!” I remember heading to the dollar store to get your birthday favors. I grabbed you a couple of special things – because its your birthday week. As we stood in line to pay for everything – you mention that you forgot something in the toy aisle… I said in a firm voice- “No Em, we are not getting anything else”.. you are persistant.. your throat is hurting as tears well up in your eyes. ” Nooo, the open close thing”… I state even firmer..”Em, we are not buying anything else” – You are not throwing a temper tantrum, but your tears begin to fall… and finally I realize something is really important to you – I get down on your level and say ” OK, we will go back to the toy aisle – but understand I am not buying anything else”. You take my hand – and we walk to the toy aisle. You reach down and grab the toy you left in the bucket of crowns. The happy meal toy… the silly happy meal toy. Your tears are gone and your smile has come back. I hug you and my tears are there – I am so sorry. I didn’t understand what you were saying. I think of how easily – I could have hurt your heart if I had ignored your request as an assumption that you wanted to purchase more toys. How I could have carried you out of the store while your special toy stayed behind. I apologized. I promised to listen better and I say how proud I am of her for standing strong.
All the times you have fallen to the ground while walking the mall… how I finally realized you weren’t falling out of defiance – you try explaining to me, in your own sweet way “my legs don’t go that fast”. I promise to walk slower and so now we stroll the mall and you no longer tell me your legs hurt.
How you dress up as princesses and you love that I don’t acknowledge you as Emerson – I ask where Emerson is.. I do this because I hope it instills that you never want to be anything other then you…. because you are amazing!
This week – you keep asking me “is your heart happy”…. not once, not twice… but all week. My sweet perfect girl. My heart is incredibly happy. I am blessed to have two amazing children. I could have never imagined my heart being happier. My tears are gone – as I remember- YOU are my blessing. You are my heart. Anything else, my sweet girl, is just the cherry on top.
sidenote: You may be wondering why I am sharing this on here- The reality is that this is not the first heartbreak for us this year… But I kept my mouth shut and had a rough time going through everything alone – people wondering why I was distant – It felt awful. This time around I thought if I acknowledged it to everyone – I wouldn’t have to pretend… I could be true to my emotions…. guess what … it still feels awful. But at the end of the day – the sun will rise again and hope will fill my heart once more. I believe that this story is not over…
STEPHANIE COX- FAUST!!! Congrats on winning the JOBY camera strap.. Please e-mail me your address so that I can send it your way.
And here is the Before and after of the image. I am not a huge fan of adding anything “fake” in photoshop. But artistically I wanted the image to be a dramatic Black and White and I had to darken the back of the image so much that I lost my snow flurries ….SOOOO… two very long days later , I figured out how to get the correct size of snow flake in order for the images in the rest of the gallery to look the same.
You can download this Free Overlay at the bottom of the page attached to this link….http://www.lizlabiancaphotography.com/blog/?page_id=4871
We woke up to snow, so before school, I let Hayden play in it… and instead of pre-school, I let Em feed the horses. In a last second idea – I threw on her Snow White dress, ran through the local gas station/market to grab some apples and when they didn’t have enough apples to fill the basket – I felt fortunate that my disorganized self found her red gymnastics uniform in the passenger seat and put it on the bottom of the basket…. and off we went.
What a hard thing to do… to find the image that speaks to you. After a year of over shooting, I have thousands upon thousands of images that move me.
But this one .. this one…is the epitome of my girl…. her spirit and her love of the ocean.
check out www.rocktheshotforum.com for other amazing submissions.
The joys of being a kid is how quickly you bounce back from a cold…. it’s almost like as we become adults we become bigger babies. What’s that all about?
Camera : Nikon d800
Lens: 35 mm
She acts like a kitty cat day and night. So when I found a christmas present that I had forgotten about .. a christmas present that sat at the bottom of a box about to be thrown away. .. I knew that I had found her long lost soul kitty.
Looks like I was right.
Camera : Nikon D800
Edited: Photoshop CS5 – Moody Black and White