Letting go

Have we talked about letting go. Or should I say, have we talked about it too much?  I try to come to each sitting sort of blank. Happy. Excited. But blank. If I don’t, if I try to envision specific shots, prearrange something “cool”, or devise a certain mood I get totally obsessed. I seriously almost can’t move or interact because I’m so busy battling my expectations. If I’m blank I can see the surroundings but more importantly I can see the people I’m with. I can delight in the uniqueness, the silly, sassy, cuteness.

The nice thing about photographing Owen (for me…maybe not his parents) is that I really don’t need to actively practice letting go. He’s outside my experience not in a regular way but in an extreme way. In the regular way he’s like all kids. Wants to be in charge, wants to do things he wants to do, wants to repeat the same joke (it’s my superpower to endlessly delight in this). No, Owen is outside of my experience in a more extreme way because he is autistic. I don’t know a lot of autistic kids and the ones I do are all so completely unique. It makes letting go so much easier. I can’t create an agenda, I can’t predict his response, I can’t plan and scheme and manipulate like I might normally do. I just have to wait. And listen. And follow. And enjoy. And that’s the best part. I can just enjoy what Owen is going to offer me. And let me tell you, in addition to my little life lesson, the actual experience of Owen is really pretty great.

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