Look out John Travolta, here comes my baby boy! This month we went up to Michigan to take part in my brother's wedding. My youngest was the ring bearer and I photographed (pictures to come). All of my children were great at the wedding, but I was most proud of them at the reception! It was a very long and fun reception where all 3 of my children got on the dance floor and danced as hard as they could until about 10:30 at night! I loved that none of them were shy and self-conscious. They did not care what anyone thought or who was watching...they just kicked their little feet and wiggled their tiny butts all over that dance floor. The youngest was the most hysterical. He kept up this energy level the entire night!
Sigh. These past few months have been crazy around here. I know everyone says that, but we have had REAL crazyyyyy at the Smith house. Our life has been temporarily turned on it's side..it's temporary and not super serious, but enough to tip each of us over so that we have to force ourselves upright and find our balance again. We are still working on that, but it will come. Now, while I am trying to find MY balance, the world seems to be throwing sick children, urgent care visits, ,broken water heaters, broken AC units. flooded bathrooms, and ADT alarms that go off in the middle of the night trying to knock me down like I am involved in a huge game of dodge ball. I deal with the situations head on, but it has left me feeling exhausted, tired , cranky...not myself.
On Saturday I took my kids out to EZ's for some burgers and fun with their friends. While I am eating, I see this 9 year old boy and his mom out of the corner of my eye. I noticed him earlier. He was pointing at me and trying to pull himself out of his mother's grip. She released him and he ran right over to me and gave me a huge, tight, all of his heart, hug. "I'm Connor" was all he said. I hugged back equally as hard and laughed while I introduced myself. His mom apologized "I'm sorry. He has autism". I said "Don't worry about it. I thought maybe...I have taught children with autism". She laughed "He could probably tell, he does not usually run up and hug strangers. He could tell you were a good person".
No. I don't think that's what it was. I think he could tell that I was hurting a little bit. I think he could tell that I was a person who needed a hug. In all the time I have been involved with children with 'disabilities', I feel like they have other abilities that we don't have...not like superhero abilities, but the ability to look past all the b.s. and the drama to really see into the hearts of others. They may have areas where they struggle developmentally, but they are so much more evolved than the rest of us in the areas we need to grow in. The areas that really matter.
Here are some things I have learned about people with 'disabilities':
-They don't hide anything. If they like you, they will tell you. If they think you suck, you will know.
- They love with their whole heart.
-They hold nothing back...they laugh when they want, cry when they want, dance and sing when they want.
- They are 100% true to themselves...unique individuals not worrying about changing to please others...not trying to fit into some mold.
-You will have a friend for life
If people could look past the behaviors that make them different from everyone else, they would find beautiful, funny, genuine, amazing, honest, quirky, creative, and loving people. People we could all learn from. People who want to hug a sad stranger. People who leave me striving to be more like them.
This is my friend's sweet baby Alyce. One of my favorite things about Alyce is that she has both distinct sassy and sweet sides. It helps that she has super cool parents that are equally as sassy and sweet and foster that in her. She is one smart chiquita who charms the socks right off of me. When I told her mom what my idea was for this session, she was all for it. I love when people trust me like that. Like I said...super cool parents. So we got Alyce as a ultra hip skate baby and then her as a sweet ice cream cart pushing Texas girl, complete with boots. She really is as sweet as that ice cream she is eating.
We are once again joining Melody and Megan for Team Up Thursday. Amy and I both had every intention of keeping up with it this summer...well...as you can see, we both took a break...AAAAALLLLL summer. Now we are back and ready to go.
The theme for this week was "Work"
Amy's sweet photo is on top. Amy says:
Well the monsoon we had this week kept me from getting the shot I originally had in mind! So, I reached into the archives ;) Yes, I know I’ve shared photos of my grandparents before. What can I say, they are my heroes. But they truly work their tails off! Every morning granddad is off to feed the cattle, shown here. And of course there is the garden, the land, the creek, and all the other critters (wildlife my grandmother feeds) and all the things that entails. At 91 years young, I believe the work keeps them going!
I LOVE how Amy loves her grandparents. I hope that someday soon I will get to meet them. She is so smart and blessed to get all these photos she has of them What a treasure.
My photo is of me and yoga...yeah..not work in the typical sense, but yoga is work for me. Hard work. That's one of the reasons I like it so much. I am not the the type of person that things come easy to. I am not, what I would call, 'naturally gifted' at very many things. Everything I enjoy has required hard work (running, guitar, photography, parenting, baking). I don't know if I enjoy them because they are hard work or if I work hard at them because I enjoy them. A little of both maybe. To me, things that are worth doing take a lot of time and hard work. I don't mind waiting and working. That old cliche' "slow and steady wins the race"...well that's me with almost everything. Yoga is work for me...it's hot, it's sweaty, it can be uncomfortable...it's hard work, but it's the kind of work that makes me forget about the work that stresses me, if only for an hour.
P.S. I did this using the camera's timer, y'all...now that's hard work;)