My son will only be a five year old for six more weeks. For about two years now, every time we go to the grocery store, if he behaves appropriately he gets to pick out a brand new Hot Wheels car. It never makes it to the car in its packaging. The checkout person even knows the deal. There’s no bagging of the item, it goes directly from the scan into his hands. Maybe she has a grandson his age. Maybe he remembers when he used to go the grocery store with his mom. Whatever it is, it’s knowledge that is universal and unspoken : the car goes right to the kid.
We planned this milestone session almost a year ago, but life got busy. We pushed it out until “next weekend” and then the next, and then the next. Then we were going to do it for his half birthday but busy season picked up and it got pushed out again and then a few more times. It dawned on me this past weekend that this five year old is going to be a six year old and it’s going to happen soon. In the blink of an eye this major milestone in childhood is almost over. Just like every milestone (it seems) it is vanishing into thin air before I am ready to let it go.
Ever since I was a child myself, I have had a hard time letting go of important moments. I cling to them, relish in the joy and wallow in the melancholy as they pass. It is this trait that led me to photography in the first place. If I can capture a moment, I never have to truly let it go. Today, I clung to this moment because one day he won’t care about Hot Wheels. I clung to it because out of sixty images of the exact same setup I still couldn’t narrow it down to just one. I clung to it because in six weeks my little boy will be six years old. Today, he’s five.