Then the dinosaurs went extinct.
When I finally did load the film, I ventured forth and took twenty-four pictures; twenty-five if it was a really good roll of film. My portfolio contained such gems as the sky, the inside of my purse, half a finger tip, and bits and pieces of the subjects I was trying to photograph in the first place.
Despite these earnest, early attempts, I’ve never taken good photographs. Nor am I particularly willing to be subjected to being photographed.
I’m notoriously unphotogenic. It’s genetic, through my father’s side. My father, his mother (my grandmother), myself, and possibly Preschooler, all experience the same bizarre anomaly in front of a camera. Our eyelids all go sort of heavy, and we basically look like we just took some sort of really fun drugs, even when we’ve taken NO DRUGS AT ALL.
We look like this in every photo, ever.
Even more significant, I can’t smile on cue. Every time some one says “smile!” or “say cheese!” I go full-jungle-ape, baring as many teeth as humanly possible. I was probably sixteen before I learned to smile properly for a camera, and even now it’s a fine line between nothing and JAZZ HANDS!
With this history, it should come as no surprise that I’m rather bad about taking photographs of major life events. I’m not artistic, I don’t like being in pictures, and my otherwise beautiful children are either smiling weird or either running towards or away from the camera. Because of this, I usually just end up with some pictures of off-center birthday cakes and whirling dervishes in my photo albums
More importantly, I'd just rather live in the moment rather than try to get a good picture. I just enjoy my time, and then mooch a few good pictures off of someone else who actually bothered to pick up a camera during the event.
This didn't bother me until we celebrated Toddler's second birthday. All of a sudden I realized I took no pictures - not one - of her birthday party. And even though I’ve received a handful of beautiful photos from my mother and my mother-in-law, I still felt sad.
I'm sad to see my baby growing up.
Can't she stay a baby just a little bit longer? Because law degree aside, I have yet to perfect and patent my time machine, what with filling out those arduous forms at all.
Just don’t let her turn 16 yet, ok?