When Lucy was born, one year and one day ago, I decided to try not to get too tied up with documenting everything. She is not a favorite historical subject, nor an outdoor hobby, nor an ongoing political argument with friends strung out across the continent; she is my daughter. Whatever energy I had, I wanted to spend connecting and interacting with her in the first person, not describing it in the third person. I felt like it was a solid idea.
As we approached Lucy’s first birthday party we decided to put together a DVD to show on our TV depicting video and pictures of her taken over the first year of her life. I sort of felt a little panic and thought, have I been taking enough pictures? Well, upon investigation, I assure you I have. And no doubt, after putting together a twelve minute video and slide show DVD in preparation for her first birthday party, I realized plenty of documenting by multiple parties has been going on. So I found there’s plenty of photos and videos, but little written context, aside from what Facebook’s “walled garden” timeline annoyingly and feebly provides. Luckily, we haven’t been anywhere exotic, and there are at least two of us to remember everything in the pictures and videos, but I can’t help but wonder — “what about in 20 years?”
About the same time I was working my way through putting together a DVD about Lucy, I came across an old photo album from when I was in Germany in during the summer of 1992. I was reminded that I made the same decision then. It seemed logical for me at the time to keep track of what I was doing in a journal. After all, I knew then I liked writing. Besides, it was writing that got me into the free program to tour Germany in the first place. But I thought it was more important to just experience everything directly and ditched my initial journal idea. I figured, how could something as cool as being in Europe at age 16 ever lead to having a single shred of memory be at risk of being forgotten?
Or so I thought.
As I paged through the photo album, it was really alarming that so many places and people who seemed to be so critical and and important at the time, are now just faded images of places I can’t name and faces of people I used to know. It really wouldn’t have killed me to have jotted down a few notes along the way. I really regret not having done that.
Anyway, I’m going to be posting here a bit more from now on. Otherwise, I’m afraid it will all just end up running together one day.
The photo was taken at Clark Park today with my 2-year old Droid Incredible HTC using the “Amaro” filter in a really cool photo-app I’ve recently discovered, Instagram. It was a brisk Easter morning that included breakfast at the Gold Standard with Gigi and Grandparents Laepple, followed by more food and a gathering at my Aunt Kathy’s.
During our visit, I took Lucy out on the large back lawn and sat her in the middle of a patch of grass, clover, and purple and yellow wildflowers. Her fingers were dexterous enough to grasp a clover, as I showed her how to, but not strong enough to remove it from the soil. I had to do so for her, so she could sit still and grasp it close to her face and examine it. I felt for a brief increment that I would not feel a single moment of regret if the world and time itself were to end at that moment. Then she tried to eat it.
There was a brief moment with my father and cousin Jimi in the room where I thought Lucy would take her first step. I think she’s going to keep us on edge for a few weeks. She seems so close.