Dear Kimberly and Ben,
Do you remember the old family photographs that are kept somewhere in your house?
The old fashioned albums with really cheesy colors and covers where the edges are torn and the plastic sheets covering the photographs are barely holding together. And then you look at the photographs, and they are yellow, or some may be a pale shade of blue, and you could see that they are faded and slowly losing their colors. But you look at the image, and all of that doesn’t matter anymore. Because right in the middle you see a picture of you when you were a baby doing your first crawl, or perhaps it was your mum in her working clothes when she was how old we are right now. Or a picture of your dad, and you remember that he used to have a head full of black hair and no round tummy. Probably rocking bell bottom jeans, and it made you realise that your dad was the real hipster. Perhaps you see them holding you in front of your birthday cake, and you were wearing new clothes that they probably worked very hard to buy back in those days. And beside them were your grandparents – they looked so young and happy.
These are the most precious items in your home, because they hold what is so important – the triggers to the feelings and memories of your childhood, and how things used to be.
I often wonder what is was like when my parents were young. And as I come into my thirties, I come to an unconscious realisation that I’m of the same age as they are in the pictures I hold. Back when they were just young working adults, having friends and having fun – what they have experienced, may be what I am experiencing now. Perhaps one day our children will only think of us as old fashioned, practical or even boring.
But the truth is, we lived.
We had fun, we partied. There were heaps of crazy times, and there were friendships that were formed and then broken, and there were friendships that are yet to be formed and may last our lifetime. And there were a lot of deep, heartfelt conversations. Conversations that may have sounded something like, ‘What should I do with my life?’ or ‘I want to travel the world.’. Conversations to remind us that there are so many things we haven’t figured out, and we are scared and afraid.
But our children will never see what we’ve been through. And someday, we will forget too – we are just human after all.
So I created these photographs for you. Photographs that may not be sharp, where the lines are not straight, that are imperfectly taken, perhaps blurry or underexposed, slightly yellowish or even blueish – just like the ones in your family album. But I hope that it doesn’t matter. Because what matters is how you felt when the photograph was taken. It matters that you remember you were once young, full of life, deeply in love and spontaneously random. It matters that it helps you remember the good things and the good times you have had in your life.
And let’s not get it wrong. These are the good times.