Tuesday, April 12, 2016
Flashback: Baby Daze
Sometimes I can get a little bit critical when I suspect someone is window-dressing or putting forward an overly perfected image of themselves. There are so many opportunities to do this on social media. It can happen every day. And really, it can be a little bit tiresome to witness over and over again.
I would never do that.
Although…. as part of our latest drive to pare down, pack up and move house yet again, I've been going through old photographs. Saving, backing up, printing and preserving.
Yesterday, I found these two from 2011, taken just days apart. I hadn't set eyes on these images since, probably, the time they were taken.
The one above I looked at sort of oddly. I actually couldn't remember setting up the photo - and yet it clearly had been set up. I sort of liked the arrangement of baby and blanket and teething ring, I liked the colours (blue and brown together are some of my favourites). But I didn't feel any love or memories shining up through the camera lens.
When I clicked open the second image, the realness of it struck me like I'd been winded in the chest. I had forgotten that we used to change Timmy's nappies on little old wooden desk (before we swapped it for a set of white Ikea drawers). I had forgotten how we used to line up a row of damp wipes next to him. And I'd completely forgotten, wiped from my memory, the giant white fishing-bait bucket where we'd put his day's dirty nappies. I don't think there are any other photos showing those nappy wipes, or that giant nappy bucket. I had forgotten them completely, until this raggedy untidy unperfect picture pushed them back into my face.
I mean, I'm not going to vow to start taking more pictures of peoples' dirty nappy buckets. But somewhere in the middle, there's the beauty and the reality, the messiness and the love. That's what I'm always trying to capture.
The perfected picture just left me cold.