Adolescent Joy by Dawne Olson

I can assure you that tonight there is not a picture I’ve put up that means more to me than this one. It was difficult to adjust the focus as my tears were fogging up the viewfinder. Pulling them in with the 300 mm lense…I knew it was too dark out. I knew the pictures weren’t going to be technically “good”.
Both girls had come into the house crying earlier in the evening. Trembling… bruised.. grass stained. They had made a sharp turn with the 4-wheeler and flipped it at the end of our driveway. All of our kids have been driving this four wheeler since they were about seven years old. Lately I’ve watched the girls grow more daring. More bold. Our warnings to “slow down” and “stay in the yard” began to carry less weight in the lightness of their own sense of immortality.

Aside from some minor “road rash” they are essentially unharmed.
Thank God.

It was a typical friday in Fall in many ways: Indian summer weather with a blazing orange sunset and harvest moon. Our family of six, spread out now as the kids grow older. My oldest boy working at the grocery store in town. My other son playing at a football game in a town an hour away. My husband bringing the hay in from the alfalfa field as the sun touches the horizon. And me with my camera watching my girls and our two dogs race up and down the driveway in youthful exhuberance.

Every night when I lay my head down on my pillow at night… I know I wont’ sleep until the last one has walked in the door. I worry about them driving. I worry about them getting injured in sports. I worry about their grades. I worry about their wrecklessness. I worry that they don’t sleep enough, eat enough, study enough. What mother doesn’t. Right?

I’ve seen a lot of kids carried off the football field. Every game I pray that it won’t be mine. My husband works with the Sheriff’s Department on weekends in a college town. Lots of drinking and partying. Lots of stories about kids in car wrecks. I pray every time they turn the key to go somewhere. And all my life I’ve grown up hearing stories of farm accidents. We all grew up around the tractors and 4-wheelers and dirt bikes. My kids are no different. As I watched the girls skipping up the driveway tonight, I knew that one prayer in particular had been answered today:
God, please keep them safe.
I know this is long. But if you have kids, (or really just anyone you love!)…………… I hope this will remind you to pull them closer.


  • Dawne Olson
    Dawne Olsonover 6 years ago

    This ones for the girls! To mothers and daughters and sisters and your loyal canine companions. Here’s to adolescence! Flip-flops and pajama pants, tank tops and pony-tails….

  • pixie3
    pixie3over 6 years ago

    These are spectacular photo’s not only for the reason that you wrote, which are a blessing indeed, but also for the carefree, fun and enjoyment that is being seen here!! Well fdone in capturing such splendid joy in these photo’s :)

  • Thank you!! I appreciate your comment (and I just love your avatar!)

    – Dawne Olson

  • AndreaMarie
    AndreaMarieover 6 years ago

    Dawne, you write beautifully, these captures are beautiful, you are beautiful. Thank you for sharing, thank you for the reminder to pull them closer. Excellent!

  • Thanks Andrea… sometimes a little ‘scare’ is a very effective reminder!

    – Dawne Olson

  • Di Jenkins
    Di Jenkinsover 6 years ago

    This is great! Joy, colour, vibrance and kids thankfully still in one piece!! LOL!

  • Thank you for the comment! Yes, the days of autumn always seem so much more alive to me.

    – Dawne Olson

  • fashionforlove
    fashionforloveover 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing…. you are blessed !

  • Thanks! (Hey! i got the rainbow tree T last week! I LOVE IT!! Will try to post in buyers booth sometime this week!!)

    – Dawne Olson

  • velveteagle
    velveteagleover 6 years ago

    Oh you are so right Dawne.. Such a moment to capture.. Eternal.. Now you just remember this and many more… Be happy you have had what you got. Some do not have that choice.. Most of all don’t worry so much if you can find more time to laugh.. Life goes too fast to tarry away on excess worry.. Great work .. Ha.. Love the light..

  • Thank you for those words!! (I DO worry too much… terrible habit… passed on in my genes I think! lol)

    – Dawne Olson

  • Craig Shillington
    Craig Shillingtonover 6 years ago

    Awwwww Dawne!! Delightful :) Takes me back :) :) VBS

  • Much thanks Craig! I’m so glad it did that for ya! xx

    – Dawne Olson

  • Cyril Marchand
    Cyril Marchandover 6 years ago

    Simplicity… Just a wee break in time !
    I do like shot like this one, telling a story…
    Well done Dawne !

  • Thank you Cyril… I’m always trying to measure my words and what images to put up…. asking myself “is it too much?” or “will it make a difference?” I’m so glad you enjoyed it.

    – Dawne Olson

  • mikrin
    mikrinover 6 years ago

    What a fun capture Dawne!! Wonderful work!!!

  • Thank you… kids are just so resilient.. easily forgetting what moments before was a crisis!

    – Dawne Olson

  • Emily Peak
    Emily Peakover 6 years ago

    Thanks for making me tear up first thing this am!
    You captured a wonderful moment and I understand your sentiments!
    Hugs to you,my friend!

  • Aw!! thanks Emily… I’m so glad you were touched! (I was a little shook up myself so I appreciate the empathy!! lol) xx

    – Dawne Olson

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