A Photo Flashback

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

While going through the garage today, we came across an old box of mine overflowing with memories. The box itself, was given to me by my Aunt years ago. I called it my "unicorn" box". More like a trunk, than a box, but it kept its nickname no matter the difference. Inside the trunk, photographs and rolls of film, handwritten letters and postcards, diaries and dolls... all things that made both my cheeks and my heart flush, at the same time.

There aren't very many pictures of me as a baby. I don't know if its that my parents didn't like to take pictures, or if it was more that they were maybe... distracted? Either way, I wish I had a baby book to look back on. Or an old outfit that I wore. All I have left is a tattered teddy bear that I still sleep with at night (Christopher threatened to lock him up in a shadow box, but I couldn't handle it). This is the exact reasoning behind my hobby (some might call it an obsession) of capturing my children on film. Everyday. One hundred times a day.

I don't know exactly how old I am in this picture. I was born almost 7 weeks premature, weighing in at around 5 lbs. Isn't my Grams beautiful? I miss her. She used to watch me and my cousin during the days, while my parents worked. I went to Kindergarten down the street from her house, in the Hayward hills. We moved away from her when I was 6, but she flew me back to visit her every summer. She past away when I was 12. Its almost heartbreaking to look at this picture, but reminds me of how much she loved me, and of course, how much I still love her. My daughter sometimes says things that only my Grams used to say, like the word "kee kee", when something is yucky. One day she said it out of nowhere, and it knocked the wind out of me. I asked her to repeat herself, just to make sure I heard her right. Where had that come from? And one time a friend of mine came over, who holds a strong resemblance to my Gram's basic features, despite the drastic age difference, and Eleanore called her "Grandma". I didn't think much of it, until the first time Eleanore saw a picture of my Grams, and pointed to her and said "Grandma", without my properly introducing her to the woman in the photograph. My heart skipped a beat. ...But I'll save Eleanore's eerie ghost whisperings for another night. Right now I need to show you an amazing picture of my dad...

This picture was taken when I was 3. We went horseback riding while visiting friends in Oklahoma over the 4th of July. I remember flying in my very first plane, holding my very first sparkler, and seeing my very first scorpion. I remember being afraid of snakes that swam in the water while we went boating, being jealous of the amazing play kitchen that belonged to the little girl that we were staying with, and thinking I was the luckiest child on earth to have such a heroic father. There are more pictures from that same trip, somewhere, of me wearing his cowboy hat (seen in the above picture), opposite my favorite purple dinosaur night gown. I'm really lucky that these photos were saved. As you can see, this picture has been through a lot. My family and I lost nearly everything we owned when our house flooded in 1996. I'll save that for another night, too. Tonight I'd just like to stare at these pictures, and remember over and over again, until they're etched onto the inner most walls of my brain, kept safe from natural disasters and swimming snakes, just how important my family is to me.


Megan July 28, 2009 at 10:31 PM  

The story that went along with the first picture brought tears to my eyes. It reminds me of a picture my mom has of my great grandma (g-ma) and me. She passed away when I was four, and I can barely remember her, but I know she loved me and I loved her very much. It also reminds me of a picture of my papa and all of his granddaughters. He passed away five years ago and I still miss him every day. I don't think I'll ever get over losing him.

Anonymous,  July 29, 2009 at 6:27 AM  

Tia I love your pictures. I have my little keep sake box which holds things like photos, special items given to me by people who are no longer in my life or who have passed away. I also have a box full of all the letters you wrote to me after I went back to Kelso.. letters from you begging me to stop smoking... letters from your trips to Cali and the people you saw in the malls. Even an essay you wrote about me. I still have pictures of my best friend who made her burriots dance! Thanks for sharing the memories.


BeckyKay August 1, 2009 at 6:12 PM  

I love that you have memory boxes, too! My basement is FULL of rubbermaid totes FULL of memorabilia. Some of it is kind of embarrassing (notes & cards from an old boyfried), but I would NEVER get rid of it. It tells so much about me.

My sister and I are both scrapbookers, and we each took our own childhood pictures from our parents' house to get them into albums. My sister called me one day to say that she couldn't find any pictures from such and such years. I told her I didn't really have any either. I suspected that my parents were too cash strapped to pay for the film and developing. Mom was able to confirm that was pretty much it! Aren't you glad our kids are growing up in the digital age? At least in that respect?

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