Don't Grow Up

Every so often my photography group, shuttersluts, meets up for a photo excursion.

This time I invited you, my dear niece. I wondered if taking photographs was something you would even be interested in. To my surprise, you said yes and asked if you could bring a friend. Of course! You're turning thirteen this year; where did the time go? You are vibrant, beautiful, clever and funny. You're turning into your own person. 

I got a couple of other girls together and we drove out into the country. We were going to sneak into some place we shouldn't - but that's half the fun right? I put my old camera in your hands, set it to auto and let you run. I kept an eye on you among the steep ledges, heavy machinery, and open water. I watched from a distance as you and your friend took turns taking photos of one another. 

You guys got dirty, bit by bugs, and tried to catch some fish..

I just wanted you to be a damn kid.

I haven't yet looked at the photos you took, but I will try to edit and them stash them away for the future. I feel like life moves fast and I often forget to lend my time to people who mean the most to me. 

I love you, Livi. Just be a kid for a little while longer. Don't grow up.