Capturing A Moment

I am always and forever behind her, catching up. I am begging, negotiating. Hold on, let me take just one picture.

But she's gone, arms and legs propelling her forward, eyes set on some distant there, hair flying and curling in the wind of her own motion. She is whirling ever away.

Just one. Promise. You can show me your sass. And she stops, a little girl with all power.

One hand flies to her suddenly jutting hip, her head tilts, her eyes slant and she is 5, 10, 15 standing outside the movie theatre with a gaggle of other naively confident girls learning to push their breasts out while sucking in their bellies.

But now, this tick-tock moment, she is just a little girl in rain boots and too many necklaces and an umbrella though there's no rain. She is 5, 3, 1 toddling away from me to cruise from surface to surface, exploring a world she doesn't know can be dangerous.

The shutter clicks. The stasis falls away and she's off again. Singing and twirling on a trajectory that moves her firmly toward a future this moment can't begin to capture.


  • Cheri

    All Bella, all the time. Your writing is fantastic!

  • suzannah | the smitten word

    WOW. this is stirring, kelly! they are all those ages at once, aren't they?

    you can show me your sass--love that:)

  • Jo

    So sweet....and glad to know I'm not the only one chasing my children around for "just one picture". Love how you put it...she is 5, 10, 15....5, 3, 1.. It smashes my heart just to think about how fast these moments fly.

  • Sarah

    I love that you tempt her into standing still with "you can show me your sass." How funny is that?!

    Yes, they are always moving around and being them! The older they get, the less adept my iPhone camera is at catching them. Methinks I should carry my heavy duty Digital around with a super-speed shutter just to get a blur-free image every once in a while. !!!

  • C (Kid Things)

    She definitely showed you her sass.

  • Heather Caliri

    Love the sass! I'm grateful I can usually get mine to stay still, if just for a moment.

  • Stacy Uncorked

    I love, love, LOVE this! She's adorable! :)

    Cat Nap

  • Stacia

    Umbrellas in the non-rain are the best. And those awesome boots? Clearly, a reflection of her bright-as-the-sun personality.

  • Aidan Donnelley Rowley

    "The stasis falls away."

    I love these words. And this post.

  • Kelly Miller

    One day she'll look back at ages 4 and 5 and wonder how she didn't break a hip. The sass photos are the only ones she enjoys standing still for. Confession: I also sometimes say, "Work it!" but that makes me feel like a stage mom.

  • Liz Mays

    I love that she likes to show the sass. That is too, too cute!

  • Adrienne

    Negotiating for that photo! Stopping them just long enough to capture a drop of their essence. I loved you counting forwards and backwards her age in your head...we do that! Crazy how just one little moment can mean so much!

  • Tiffany

    Oh my goodness...she is precious. I'm constantly negotiating with the boys especially. With Olivia, I just have to get her to hold still!!!

  • BigLittleWolf

    Oh, I love this! I'm right in the moment with you and Bella. Gorgeous writing.

  • Sara

    It's easy to get caught up in the 'big moments': birthdays, holidays, school concerts. But sometimes it's the photos of the in-between that mean the most

  • Stephanie

    "But now, this tick-tock moment...She is 5, 3, 1 toddling away from me to cruise from surface to surface, exploring a world she doesn't know can be dangerous." Yes, yes, YES this! Photos are the one way we can travel back in time, to relive those moments that happen so fast and are all too soon forgotten. Thank you for these beautiful words today!

  • amanda {the habit of being}

    oh yes! so familiar. and i must add, i love her sassy pose ;-)

  • Justine

    Love this post and the way you composed it in reference to time and momentum. And perhaps even inertia in a way.

    Gorgeous writing. Gorgeous girl.

  • Lindsey

    Oh, I am crying. Yes, yes, yes, they are toddling away, I am running after them trying to capture it, in pictures, in words, however I can. The moments stream through my fingers like water. xox

  • Rudri Bhatt Patel @ Being Rudri

    Your Bella is so adorable. And I love her spunk and sass. She's a definite keeper ;)

  • Bibliomama

    You rock. She rocks. This post rocks. (sorry, I slept badly last night and it's late.)

  • Alita

    This was so much more elegant than simply saying "time flies" because it does, and we ALL feel that way, but you captured it succinctly. Your writing style and voice is effortless.


  • Unknown

    I LOVE HER FACE! Kelly, there is nothing about this I don't love. This is fantastic.

  • Unknown

    Love this post!

  • Cheryl

    Love the moment captured in your words. And the picture is, of course, priceless.

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