Tuesday, February 22, 2011

the son becomes the father

Yesterday I was reading some more about aperture and shutter speeds and this evening I was out practicing shots with my camera.  I am beginning to retain some of what I am reading, although I feel I am trying to speak a new language here.  The language of the eye.  From my soul, to my eye, to the camera lens.  And slowly but surely it's happening.  I am a willing student.

When I had just finished my practice shots and walked into the house, my son Jim drove up.  He had a headlight out Steve told me, and wanted some help changing it.  Steve has always been a mechanical genius in our family.  He can literally fix anything.  He says he can't, but I can vouch for the thousands of dollars he has saved our family with his expertise.  I didn't think Jim was as adept as his dad.  Because I didn't think he ever spent enough time with his dad to really learn much of what Steve knew.

As I stood and watched, and got some more practice shots with Big Girl, I had to stop.  I was watching Jim move around the car and gather tools, and begin to repair the car, and it suddenly hit me so hard that it brought tears to my eyes.


He looked so much like Steve, his movements, the way his hands worked, that I felt suddenly thrust back 25 years in time.  I could see Steve at Jim's age again, moving around, working on things.  And I watched through my tears as Steve stood by, ready to help Jim if he needed it.  The headlight was soon changed, with only minor advice from Steve.

When did this happen?  When did my son grow into a man?  A father of his own sons?  Just yesterday he was my chubby blond baby, smiling and happy.  How fast time goes by, like a whisper on the wind, heard one moment, and then fading away.

And standing there watching them, I suddenly felt my own mortality, and saw that youth had passed from father to son.  As it should.  As it was destined to do.  And with the touch of melancholy I felt, was also a feeling of satisfaction.

We raised this son well.  A son to be proud of.
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