Children are Strange

Unexpected Evening

Last night I had one of the strangest evenings I have had in a very long time.  Firstly you have to understand that I sometimes take photos as a hobby.  While I have not really mentioned this in the blog in a very long time, it is still one of those things that is at least somewhat in my life.  My wife and I used to go off on these photo shoots on the weekends, and now that it is getting nicer we probably need to start doing it again.  The problem with being into photography is that people seem to think that you might be interested in taking photos for them.  You have to understand that the sort of photos I enjoy taking are landscapes, buildings that show “urban decay”, and interesting advertising signs.  People photography has always bored me, and while I used to help my dad as an assistant while he did portrait photography…  it is not exactly something that I feel I am very good at.  However when asked by friends I will give it the good ole college try.  Several years ago I photographed a wedding of some neighbors, and another time I did some family photos for them.  Recently when they decided to adopt two kids there was talk of needing photos for the adoption ceremony.  This always seemed like a far off destination, but a few weeks ago they got back the date and it was the first part of May meaning we needed to get something done quickly.

So as a result we settled on meeting up after work yesterday, hoping that maybe just maybe we would have some light to work with.  All in all I think it went pretty well and over the course of about thirty to forty minutes I took close to 400 photos.  Now granted some of those were rapid fire to account for blinks and eyes closed etc, but it was still a lot of posing and trying to keep two small children 2 and 4 from going into full blown meltdown.  I am thankful to my wife especially who is not bored by portrait photography and actually somewhat enjoys it, who helped to figure out how to pose people and wrangle them.  Afterwards we had planned on having a quiet dinner at IHOP because for whatever reason breakfast as dinner sounded amazing.  However when we mentioned that we were going out to eat everyone seemed to want to tag along.  This was fine, just unexpected and before we knew it we were dining with five adults, 2 kids and 1 kiddult…  developmentally still a child but otherwise seems like an adult.  The two soon to be adopted children, you could tell spent a good chunk of their lives just not receiving enough attention.  Both are hungry for adult interaction, and at numerous points during the evening I ended up with one of them up on my knee answering a bevy of questions…  or with them being completely enthralled and fascinated by my beard.

Solitude Required

The evening also thoroughly cemented in my mind how much we don’t want children.  I mean the kids were awesome and I am more than happy to be an unofficial “uncle”, and this summer will be fun given that they already think our backyard is a “water park”.  However given that we went to dinner around 7 pm and didn’t end up getting home until 9:30…  I couldn’t handle the sheer amount of time it takes to do anything with a car load of children.  The other aspect was the fact that at no point during the evening was there anything I could ever term as “peace and quiet”.  I need my solitude and time to recharge my batteries without having to deal with any other human being… especially not one that is thoroughly dependent on me.  This is why I have ferrets an cats… because in both cases they are completely happy entertaining themselves…  but also equally happy to get attention.  I know as a kid I used to think I wanted this huge family, because after growing up a single child I craved the big family life that always seemed so much more fulfilling.  However I feel like I have a huge family… just pieced together out of my huge tapestry of friends.  There are lots of opportunities for me to be an awesome uncle, official or otherwise… and that is more than enough child interaction for me. In other news the photos seem to have turned out well, and I need to sift through the stack and pull out the best ones to pass off today.

 

5 thoughts on “Children are Strange

  1. I love my niece and nephews to tiny little pieces, but dear gods, am I glad that I decided against having children of my own. Better for the children, and better for me.

  2. I love my nephews, but when I see them I am often reminded how much I too do not want or require offspring of any kind. It was a mutual decision that me and the wife decide upon years ago, and now that we are pretty well off financially, I can’t even see how I would have been able to enjoy most of my hobbies and raise children at the same time. I do however want to applaud anyone who does have children, that is a lot of responsibility and dedication along with a ton of patients, which I discovered a long time ago, I do not have when it comes to small humans. But they are fun to be around for short periods of time and as I stated I love my nephews a lot.

    I also wanted to comment that I too love photography and tend to lean a lot towards the same type of subjects as you do, although at work I have been known on occasion to take some pretty nice pictures of my co-workers, which I’m sure they hate when we are out on the road working. Still landscapes and urban decay are more of my favorite subjects.

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