Sunday, February 14, 2010

Childhood Memoirs and Memories

When I first read about Carly's "Round Robin" Photo challenge of Childhood Memories, I signed up for it thinking, "Piece of cake....". But when I went to do it, I became very sad and actually took a whole different approach. I spent a really long time going through my archives and created a rather adorable collection of various children's photos I've taken over the years. And yes it was cute, but it wasn't personal, and it certainly wasn't MY childhood memories. It seemed like an easy way out for me but I couldn't do, just for that reason.

I thought about why I was so sad since I had wonderful memories from which to draw. The reason was that the best parts of my childhood were intrinsically connected to my mother. As many of you know, she passed away several years ago.

So I decided that rather than post a collage of other people's childhoods, I simply wouldn't post at all. What a cop out THAT would be....and I expect more from myself than that.

Today is Valentines Day, and every year, my mom would get me just a little something to show her love for me. But not only did she give me things on Valentines Day, she gave me something every single day we shared in this life. Intangible things mostly....whether it was in a gesture, the way she listened, the way we giggled, or even in the tender ways she told me I wasn't being the person she knew I could be.

My mom used to like to travel, as I do now too. When she'd go away to, she'd always bring me back a gift or made the pain of her being away slightly more managable. I always cherished those gifts...those times she showed she was thinking of me no matter how many miles were between us. I'm hoping she's still thinking of me today.

The above photos show just some of the presents that my mom gave me....some from other countries, others from our special times together....each with very different meanings. For example, the ballerina in the snow globe was from the time she took me to see "The Nutcracker Suite" in NYC, when I was not yet a teenager. The little lamb was something she secretly helped me to purchase when I didn't have the money for , but had fallen in love with in the windows of Cold Spring Harbor, NY, during the snowy holidays. (She "hired" me to teach American Sign Language to the kids in the school where she taught....funny how the amount she paid me was exactly the cost of that little lamb).

Anyway, I'll stop now, but the memories are endless....even if the lamb's fur wears thin...or the music fades from the wind-up mandolin.

It's Valentines Day and her love remains with me. May you all know that type of love at some time in your lives....