Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A lesson behind tragedy

Someone once asked me,

"Would you rather live a moment in time that you have always wanted to experience but have no memory of it whatsoever?" 

Or 

"Would you rather have tons of pictures of a moment in time and have it feel so real yet have never truly experienced it?" 

I went back and forth thinking what I would want and I remember saying I rather live the moment even if I won't remember it. That was back 10+ years ago, when I didn't quite understand the true purpose of a photograph. 

After this eventful summer and realizing the lack of pictures I've collected to remember it all I've changed my mind. A picture is worth a thousand words. A photograph tells a story even years down the road when that story have been forgotten, or rather stored way back in your loss memories. 

When I was in California last month, I decided to go through my cell and remove some pictures to make room for new ones. I usually store my pictures in shutterfly because I get great deals on photo books and prints. I went ahead and separated the pictures into albums and as I looked back at all the pictures I've gathered since 2007 it hit me. A picture is worth a thousand words. Why haven't I been snapping away the past six months like I normally do? The happiness I felt from looking back at old pictures and seeing how much my 8 year old have changed over the years was priceless.  

In 2013 I collected over 5,000 pictures and this year so far I don't come nearly as close. What happened to me? All the memories from this summer that I've only stored in my mind is bound to end up in the lost memories bucket eventually and here I am allowing that to happen. Thinking ahead into the future I want to be the old lady that has boxes upon boxes filled with pictures of her youth and growing family. I want to be able to share them with my children future wives and their children. 

I never got the chance to sit with my grandmother and ask her about her youth or how her marriage to my grandfather was. I never got the chance to ask her to tell me about my father and how he was when he was a kid and as my age. What she remembered most about her life, if she had any regrets, did she ever thought she would have 13 kids? How did raising 13 children affect her and changed her? So many question and now I'll never know. That makes my heart feel so hurt. It makes me angry that I allowed the distance to come between the relationship I could of had with this special and admirable woman. I see this as  a lesson to be learned from. I want my 50+ year old self to make it a priority to build great relationships with her grandchildren. I'm glad to have realized now the importance of a photograph. Now is a even more as important for me to snap away at every opportunity. To have stories to tell and show at my old age. 

Life is so precious. There's so much to do and look forward too. I want to enjoy every second of my life and take nothing for granted. I know it won't always be easy but life is what we make of it.


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