Monday, March 03, 2008

My mom, picture obsessions, noses & cheerios

When I was 7 years old, my mom died. No, I don't remember a lot about her and the memories I do have of her are no longer in motion picture view, they are in snapshot view. Meaning, the memories have faded enough that I only see "stills" of memories. I don't know if that makes any sense.

My mom was 46 when she died (young, yes, and a heavy smoker - she died of a heart attack, which is one of the reasons I NEEDED to quit smoking). One memory I have of her is her sitting in a lawn chair waiting for me as I got off the bus. I was in Kindergarten or 1st grade maybe? Maybe it was 2nd grade... she died the December I was in 2nd grade. I can see her sitting there in that lawn chair and I can see myself running across the front yard towards her, but the woman in the lawn chair isn't a 45 or 46 year old... she is a woman in her late teens/early 20s. And she's black & white. Why is that? Simple, yet complicated.

There are very few pictures that I have seen of my mom, the mom that I knew. Two or three maybe? I know what she looked like... dark brown short hair, a little heavy in the face... but can I picture it in my head? No. All of the pictures I have seen are when she was younger, and in black and white, so the mother in my memories has changed appearances. It strange, I know.

There are also only a handful of pictures of me growing up. There is one where I am about 6 months old, then another when I'm about a year, the next one I think I'm 4 or 5. My family wasn't a camera-happy family, I guess.

This is why, I believe, that I am obsessed with pictures. I take pictures of anything and everything. Maybe because I'm afraid I will forget things, I don't know. Maybe because I'm afraid that if I die, my girls will have a still picture memory of me and I want it to be a current still, not one from years ago.

My living room is filled with pictures... pictures of the girls in different stages of their lives, pictures of my nieces, nephews, friends, my pets... anything I can frame.

So because of this obsession the husband went out and bought me a Canon Rebel Digital camera a few years ago. This is way more camera that I will ever need, but I was thrilled to own one!

So every now & then I will take some off the wall picture... just because I can.

Everything is a potential picture... and every picture has beauty in it to someone.

Cheerios? Pretty boring, huh? But my daughter had Cheerios for breakfast this morning before school... not a scrapbook type memory, but it's still a memory. It's a memory of me being there to wake them up in the morning, get them ready for school, help them find the Tamagotchi that they lost the night before and promise them that if I find it during the day I will pause it so it won't die. (because this mom can't figure out how to feed it or clean it's poop up.) It's a memory of me being at the window as they walk down the sidewalk to the bus. Something simple as Cheerios can say a lot.

1 comment:

Jenny said...

I just love what you'e saying here about photos and memories. I'm sorry to hear about your Mom, too.