I love pictures.
If you’re anything like me and my wife, you have pictures everywhere. Hanging on walls, resting on bookcases, stored on the computer and even collecting dust in the basement. You remember, when people actually used to have film developed?
I’ve found that, especially after you have kids, life tends to morph into a bullet train that rockets by so fast you can barely keep up. I was walking down my hallway yesterday when a precocious toddler buzzed by me and caused me to trip. I temporarily lost my footing and hit the wall, which nearly knocked down a fairly large picture frame. As I steadied it and realigned it on the wall, I realized I hadn’t looked at them in quite some time.
I stared in amazement at the two happy people looking back at me with joy in their eyes. The picture was taken years ago in a different time. The faces I saw were younger, less worn down and flush with eagerness and anticipation. A young couple on the verge of life. She was dressed in a beautiful white gown looking ever the bride, with her arms wrapped around his shoulders. He was looking dapper in his tux, soaking in the moment and wondering how the hell he got such a gorgeous girl to marry him.
The moment was captured perfectly and conveyed a truly magical moment. And as I looked at it, I couldn’t help but wonder…
WHO THE HELL ARE THESE PEOPLE?
No really, I don’t know who they are. The frame actually holds four pictures. Three of them are from our wedding. Me rubbing MJ’s feet, the two of us at the altar and MJ and I posing together with our rings. But the fourth picture? Strangers. They literally came with the frame. Don’t get me wrong, they’re beautiful strangers. She’s gorgeous and he’s who I’d look like if I was 70 lbs lighter and my hairline wasn’t retreating faster than the French in wartime. But the fact remains, we have photo models hanging out where our wedding picture should be.
Then, when I walked into Will’s room, it was deja vu all over again.
You have to understand, I love Will’s room. I decorated it and worked on it myself. I put in all new baseboards, put up a chair rail around the room, painted it and even stenciled stars and moons all along the top of the room. I also put a couple of shelves in there too. I know that sounds ridiculously easy, but not for me. I’m not a handyman. I’m impressed with myself if I can take an electrical cover outlet off correctly. So when I finished that work in Will’s room it was like I had just built a damn house.
But when I looked at the two shelves above his bed I had to laugh.
We decorated his room with bumblebees. I don’t remember why. So on one shelf was the cute little bumblebee clock. It has been there for more than 2.5 years. And not once during that time has it worked, mainly because I never put the batteries in there.
On the other shelf sits a bumblebee picture frame. Inside that frame is the cutest baby picture you’ll ever see. The only problem is it’s not Will. With the best of intentions, we put that frame up there before Will was born and figured we’d take a picture of him and stick it in there. Well, 2.5 years later we still have someone else’s child peering down at us every night as we put our son to bed.
Parents of the Year right?
I thought about developing more pictures and placing them in the frame, but to be honest that smacks of effort. Besides, how fun will it be to make new friends or have people over to our house for the first time, and watch their confusion as they try to figure out who the hell the random people are in all of these family pictures? Or maybe I’ll name the couple and the baby and give them cool and interesting back stories.
Or I could just get off my lazy ass and print out a picture. But what fun is that?