I’m hoping not to ramble on about this as is my usual way.
I’ve been really enjoying Bridgett’s posts of old family photos. Kathy T‘s have been great as well. Kathas a good post about scrapbooking, and it mentions old photographs, and their importance. In our day and time, photographs are how we tell our children and their children who we are, and who we were.
All of this is reminds me of something in my life I don’t think I’ve ever really grieved. It never really mattered, till now.
I’ve gone on and on here ad nauseum about the house fire we had in 2002 (The Year from Hell™). We lost everything – EXCEPT – miraculously we were able to save almost all of our family photos. This is a blessing I will never forget; thank God we still have photos of our wedding, and all the baby pictures of the kids. Unfortunately, all of our family photos only go back to 1984.
You see, there was another fire in my family, one I don’t talk about as much. In 1984, when I was 20 years old, my parents’ house burned to the ground. I had been living there on and off during my “drifting” period. This fire was a total loss; the house literally burned to the ground. No photographs survived.
Trillian and Zaphod have no idea what I looked like as a child. They’ve never seen photos of my parents when they were young and strong, they don’t know what their grandparents on my side looked like.
As far as they can tell from the photographic history, I sprang from the earth a full grown man.
It never really hit me till now. It’s quite sad. I remember so well the laughter I had looking at photographs of my dad as a child and teenager – and the sense of connectedness. My kids really don’t know that feeling.
But, all is not lost. When my grandmother died, my dad split up all her old pictures with my uncles and aunt. I understand that there were some of me, my brothers, and my parents when they were young, along with my grandparents and other relatives. They are hidden away in some trunk at my parents’ house in Florida.
When I take the kids down for their 2 weeks with the grandparents this summer, I’m going to make Dad get out that old trunk. I’m going to bring back as many old photos as my mom will trust me with, and I’m going to spend a good part of those 2 weeks scanning.
I’d like my kids to know who I am and where I come from.