Saturday, November 6, 2010
This Is Why We Do It
You know, after going through over a thousand pictures last night in iPhotos, it would appear that my entire life has been made up of either (a) serving funky-homemade birthday cakes
or, (b) watching the sunset at either Dog Island, Cozumel, Mexico or Roseland, Florida.
Now that is not a bad life nor a bad representation of one, either. But the fact remains that I do far more than make and serve birthday cakes and watch sunsets. Or even forcing my kids to dye Easter Eggs, which is also an activity which is over-represented, it seems to me.
And then a little over a year ago, Owen was born and obviously, all I've done since then was take pictures of him.
And okay, serve birthday cakes and watch sunsets and force my children and their friends to dye Easter Eggs.
There are hardly any pictures of Thanksgiving and you want to know why? Because by the time I get done cooking that dinner, I am cooked myself and can barely manage to lift a cranberry to my lips, much less a camera to my eye. I mostly sit in a corner with a glass of rum and weep.
Not really but doesn't that sound like something I'd do?
Well, so be it. I make birthday cakes and I watch sunsets.
I do more than that but who wants to see a picture of me blogging or doing laundry or slicing onions? Or lying in bed with the covers up to my ears or scrubbing a toilet or rehearsing a play or setting the table or washing the dishes or feeding the chickens or making a martini?
I don't know. But in the long run, I think it's the pictures of people doing things that do not represent a celebration or a Big Moment which say the most. And that's one of the things I love about my blog and other people's blogs. We take pictures of the little things of our lives and post them and thus, we memorialize pots of soup and baby chickens and the tiny, tender sproutlings of spring and the pets we love and the kisses we give and receive and the cakes we bake and the salads we make and the floors we mop and the trails we walk and the places we live in, messy and imperfect and glorious.
And you know what? The pictures I take of those prosaic things that I usually delete from my iPhotos because I think that I can always take more are probably the most important ones. I always think there will always be endless pots of soup and there will always be another kiss and there will always be another chicken picture opportunity and there will always be spring and these things I have gathered and placed in my home as altars of one sort and another will always be here.
But of course they won't any more than I will.
And when my grandchildren and great grandchildren ask about me and say, "What was Grandmother like?" I have this tiny sneaking hope that this blog will still be somewhere so that my children can show them and say, "Well, she looked like this when she was watching the sunset or working in the garden or tending her chickens
and she loved her girlfriends so much.
She was crazy, your grandmother/great grandmother.
She had really strong calves
and she and Pop-Pop loved each other so much. They had so much fun together.
And she loved to write.
The pictures are one thing, the words are the rest.
And that is what I am thinking about tonight.
Don't disregard what you write on your blog as unimportant. DO NOT DO THAT!
Someday, someone may want to know what your life looked like.
And maybe, just maybe, this will all be here for them to see.
Isn't that amazing?
I think so.