I normally keep Quinn out of the bathroom, but today he snuck in and started reaching in for the sink. I know he enjoys letting water run over his hands when I wash them, so I figured I'd give him a chance to just play with water at the sink for a while. I turned the cold water faucet on, with just a tiny stream coming out to limit water waste.
Quinn, of course, is too smart for that, thank you very much. Even though he's hardly ever seen me use those particular faucets (which work differently from the others in our house), he immediately reached over and turned the water on at full blast. Thus commenced a long experimentation process for him of waving his hands in the water, turning the water flow faster or slower, adding more or less cold and hot water (I made sure the water never got too hot), and just experiencing the water at various temperatures. After a while he reached for the soap, so I put some on his hands and he looked at the foamy bubbles for a minute, then rinsed them off in the water, immediately straightening back up to reach for the soap bottle again and sign "more" (last photo).
I watched him through all this, snapping photos, and marveled at his sense of wonder and utter concentration. It was a really great moment, and one I badly needed. The past couple weeks have felt really rough, with illness all around and lots of tantrums and Category 5 meltdowns (especially when Mama tries to go do anything by myself, ever), and more than a few times I wondered why I ever decided to become a mother in the first place because I clearly sucked at it and didn't even really enjoy it anyway.
But today was good. It felt good and fun and I got to enjoy both my boys at least part of the day, and it was very much well-timed and needed. I'm grateful for that.
Last night and today I also got a chance to browse through the work of documentary/photojournalistic-style photographers like Stephanie Roberts and Calvina, and felt that flicker of inspiration that's been missing lately. It's what made me pull out my camera today when Quinn was playing with the water, and what made me actually get the photos off my computer and up on flickr so I could write this post tonight. I've hardly picked up my camera the past several weeks, and I want to get back into it-- and do so with a bit more focus, improving my skills and ability to tell the story of our lives through these images.