Seven is a great age. Fletcher is literate (there is really nothing the boy can’t read), independent (he crosses the street safely to call the neighbors out to play, then roams the front yards and sidewalks in a gang of barefoot boys) and he still loves snuggling with his Mama. He is also becoming aware of himself in context, comparing himself, for the first time, to the kids around him. It is fascinating to witness this emerging self-awareness. But a little heartbreaking too. He has started commenting on his size, noting how much bigger his friends are, wondering out loud if he will always be the smallest kid in the class. And he might be. Or, he might not be. I tell him that it really doesn’t matter. His friends don’t care how tall he is. I don’t care how tall he is.
He doesn’t really seem to care . . . but he notices.
It’s getting harder and harder not to.
Anyway, this has been on his mind a lot lately, so of course it has been on mine as well. I’m planning a series of photographs of my sweet boy with six of his buddies. Seven boys, all seven years old. I’m not really sure where it will take me, but here are the first images from the series.