I take hundreds of photos every month, and most of them don’t get shared with anyone, let alone online. And yet the moments in time that those photos capture are just as important a part of our story as the other images that I do choose to share.
I originally created this blog as a way of documenting our lives, a way of watching the girls grow into who they’re going to be and a way of remembering who they once were. It’s something I want them to be able to look back on as they get older, because memories fade but (digital) photographs don’t.
It’s easy (and tempting) to only focus on sharing the fun bits, the memorable parts, the highlights and the celebrations. But I’m learning more and more as I continue through this crazy journey of motherhood that it’s really important to me that I capture the ordinary, everyday times that we spend together as well.
The bits of the jigsaw that fill in the gaps to complete the picture.
The tantalising glimpses into who our girls are becoming.
The chaos, the calm and all the moments in between.
This monthly feature – The Moments In Between – is a space for me to share all of those magical bits that would otherwise just stay in a folder on my laptop, never to see the light of day.
I’m not quite sure where October went? It arrived in a swirling rush of golds and reds and disappeared just as quickly amidst high speed winds and torrential rain, leaving behind naked trees and a vague sense of disconnection.
We’ve had to figure out new rhythms at home (again). The husband’s shifts altered due to the curfew imposed on the hospitality industry and the new tiered restriction levels, plus Ella was self-isolating and online learning for a third of the month because one of her good friends at school tested positive for Covid-19. Working around each other is getting easier now – every time there is another change we each seem to naturally slide into a loose routine that keeps us somehow together and apart all at once.
I’m so grateful to have been able to escape the four walls of our house twice this month: once for a solo, socially distanced visit with my Stepmum in a tiny village in the depths of Essex (I stayed overnight in a hotel); and once to spend a week as a family in our happy place by the sea in Cornwall when we had the unexpected opportunity to take advantage of a late cancellation at The Beach Haven during half term.
It was the break and change of scenery we all needed, even if we did spend the entire time permanently soggy from the atrocious weather we had for the majority of the week. We didn’t let it stop us though and took advantage of every tiny burst of sunshine in between the downpours that we could get, as well as heading out to marvel at the phenomenal height of the waves during the wildest, windiest, wettest weather. Their power and ferocity took my breath away and the undulations of the tumultuous sea made it seem as if nature herself was angry at the state we’ve let our planet get into, sucking in her breath and letting it out again in a furious roar as she crashed against the rocks.
Meanwhile autumn has marched relentlessly onwards and I’m continually surprised by how quickly the time is passing. This school term usually drags frustratingly and I’m suddenly feeling conflicted. Part of me is willing this year to hurry up and end so that we’re a little closer to being out of this corona-induced mess (although how much further forwards we’ll be in a few months time, who knows?). And another part of me is simultaneously wishing it would slow down just a little bit so I can catch my breath as I watch my girls growing up before my eyes. Seeing as I can’t control time, I’ll have to be content with the two parts co-existing in an uneasy agreement to get along with each other for now.
I’m not sure whether this collection of photographs encapsulates the month in the way I want them to. It feels like there are moments missing, just out of reach, and yet I know that there was nothing more that happened than what I’ve shared here.
One thing I do know is that when I look back on these images in the months and years to come I’ll still be able to understand why I took them and how I felt in the moment I pressed the shutter. And that’s all that matters.
This record of all of our moments in between is a tangible part of our story, it’s the heart and soul of what we’re collectively experiencing as a family and every photograph deserves it’s place, whether they’re posed of candid.
This was our October.
This is us.