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.