The husband, too often, is trumped by sons and daughters. Conversation is reduced to tokens of business such as
Hello. We got another power bill and did you remember to pick up more milk and I forgot to take out the recycling again and that cheese isn’t supposed to be blue and watch out, that’s a poopy sock. Goodnight.
Bleary-eyed we stagger through parenthood, aware of each other only peripherally. In front of the camera he exists as child-carrier, slide-catcher and armpit-tickler, captured in bits and pieces alongside headlining cereal-splattered cheeks and tricycle prowess.
I’m still in a state of shock that, with a baby and a toddler in the house, a marriage with this man takes effort—effort in the way of just remembering to just be with each other and laugh, and talk, and look at each other straight in the eyes, the way we used to.
This photo is who Justin was, before. May I be so bold? RAWR.
And after? There is none yet. Not of this classic magnitude. But there will be. Post-Valentine, I’m determined: a portrait of him as himself, rather than as child-prop.
Want to join me?
Peel your camera away from the kids. Introduce us to yours, and tell us about him (or her)—the before, or the after—just your partner, no one else. Share a picture of what made (and makes) you love: a stance, a grin. Or the way he wraps his hand around the paddle of a canoe, an extension of his arm, as natural as if he were born to this place.