I used to think I'd be a writer, except that whenever i tried to get started, I didn't know what to leave out. Which meant that I said, or tried to say, everything, and consequently made no sense at all. Sometimes I wonder if in years to come I will suddenly sit down and write one magnificent story, Harper Lee style, and it will become clear that in all the years of inertia I was actually learning to sort. The wheat from the chaff.
Photography teaches me. To listen, yes, to sort. But it's more than that. The camera (and moreso the film camera) teaches me to choose. To commit with some part of my heart to the moment as it is happening and snatch it to me with an emphatic 'yes!' (digital photography, with all its wisdom of hindsight, allows me to be lazy about my choices, lets me pick the decisive moment from the safety of the future). Because when we string those moments together, the story is the sum of those parts.
It might matter, some day to come, what I chose to keep, and what I threw away.
Fi Mims, your family is amazing and beautiful and so full of life and love in bucketfulls. So grateful to have been asked to do this.