7 Septembers ago, I visited this park and placed a Flip Video Camera in front of my sons face and "interviewed" him after his first day of Kindergarten. He told me about his teacher, his new friend Cooper - pronounced at the time, "Gooper" - and a few other random factoids that a fresh new student had to offer. The start of the school year has always coincided with his birthday and this year was as close as it's ever been. Yesterday marked his first day of middle school and today, he turned 12.
For all of his existence, I've lived in Seattle, up until these last 10 months. A major reason why I moved back home was so that I could be closer as he approached middle school. He's always been with me on weekends and for weeks during the summer, but I was always 2 hours away during the week. Now, I'm only 35 minutes away and as has now become fairly routine, I find myself in his town multiple times throughout any given week, going to his games, picking him up from school, taking him to school, or just picking him up for a weekend. There's not a value that I could ever apply to being able to consistently have him be a part of my life, but being closer has been priceless.
When I asked Christian where he wanted to go this afternoon, he mentioned a few parks, I mentioned another, but I immediately started driving towards the park where I'd taken him 7 years ago. We ate pizza and opened presents there and afterwards ran around and played on the equipment at the same playground he hopped around at as a 5 year old. I go to this park, much like I go to certain places in Seattle, because there are memories there that hold special meaning to my heart. Places that I'll always remember as being a location that I could visit with one of my kids and immediately recall that place in my brain where the memories reside.
Happy 12th birthday to this talented and kind hearted kid, Christian. I love you so. #UntilWeMeetAgainProject. Day 7.
Nikon Df. Helios 44-2 58mm f/2 lens. ISO 500. Shutter 1/500th of a second. Aperture f/4.