Saturday, June 11, 2011
they say the firstborn would always be memorable. a milestone, a blessing, a beginning, a turning point going either way. i remember the first time your parents brought you in. by the end of the photoshoot, the other photographers and i were left hanging in wild imagination to put a face on you.
from the first session, we could see the look of joy in their eyes. they were so proud of you even then. i remember, how they lit up everytime they spoke of you. from your progress, your response to their baby talk, to doctor appointments, to your heartbeat. you became the center of their universe. soon, i was a satellite orbiting you too.
i used to think pictures like these were corny. over-zealous parents gushing over their child. never looking in the camera but insisting multiple shots be taken of them looking down on you nestling in your mummy's tummy. then i met your parents. your daddy's gentle care over your mummy's every move. your mum the happiest woman i ever met. i remember your mum having this big personality to match the pregnancy. everytime she walked in, the mood in the whole store would change. it's like she'd sprinkle fairy dust on everyone and we'd forget our worries. there was something so different about them. they made us feel we were part of the whole pregnancy too.
everytime i picked up the camera, i just had to click. there was no need for me to adjust the lighting, or tell your parents where to stand. they did it so naturally, and all the pictures would turn out beautiful. your dad would be so careful not to hug your mummy tight for fear of harming you, but she would would grab him close. the sheer laughter and genuine smiles made me a little envious of them. it also made me realize how important you were. they would speak of their futures for you. who would be the good parent, bad parent. and how they had plans to embarrass you when you grew up. i hope you've been good so they would spare you this humility.
they say, pregnancy makes a woman glow, makes her most beautiful than she's ever been. i would agree since working in this store i have met so many mothers. but here was a rare case, that rubbed it's magic onto the father as well. your dad had a glow of his own. never once did he frown when he came into our store, and he had this charm when he spoke to his wife that made james dean look less of a gentleman. i felt like i was living in a happily ever-after movie at times.
few months later, and we had a new customer in our store. you finally popped out of the oven. well your mum didn't exactly say "popped out", but that's a whole different story for another day. we finally met you. never met a child more charming than you. surprisingly big eyes for an orient child, spiky hair with bruce lee-like long sideburns, handsome smile, and very friendly too. someday this child of yours is going to be a heartbreaker, i told your parents.
"not if he's staying under our roof!".
everyone in the store wanted a piece of you. your parents did not need to look for a babysitter, they'd get free labour with us as we passed you around like a musical box. that was the day we took your first family photo. i'm sure you've seen it at home many times. the one with your dad slightly teary-eyed, your mum hugging you tight. i remember it clearly, because i took that shot.
and i also keep a copy of it. reminds me of the satisfaction in my job.
(to be continued)