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“I saw my life pass before my eyes”

April 29, 2024

Category: My Story

We have all heard this phrase…..but I can tell you, with certainty, I have watched my life pass before my eyes.

After my mother’s passing, I took on the project of scanning her photographs from the years 1953 to 2015.  My mother was known for documenting every event by taking photos.  She had compiled 38 albums full of photos!  Yes, of course, we often teased Mom about all the picture taking and as youngsters we would roll our eyes, but I am now grateful she persisted.  This is just one more gift my parents left for our family.

During the process, I was filled with so many different emotions…..I found myself smiling and crying as the memories flowed and I recalled people, places and events.

I saw my Grandmother “Granny” when my parents were first married.  In the photo, Granny was the age that I am now……and I thought she was always old – lol.

I had a glimpse into my parent’s life as they were dating and newly married.  Who knew they were once so young and had picnics on blankets with friends?  The photos reflected the first Christmas they spent in their new home.  Their living room was sparsely furnished with a TV, a card table and chairs, and a Christmas tree…..but they were beaming with happiness and pride.

I watched my parents welcome my sister and me into their lives as they proudly took pictures of their new babies.

My childhood pictures reflect all that I remember about my early days…..birthday celebrations, holiday traditions, family picnics and day trips.  A home filled with love, comfort and security.

The years passed with school pictures, birthday parties, church events, vacations and I became a young woman.  I was ultimately blessed with children of my own.  Again, the photos document their childhood and teen years with school pictures, birthday parties, baseball teams, sleepovers and vacations.

As my children grew through the years, I noticed the same traditions continued.  My parents were in their new roles as “Gommy” and “Poppaw”, and they were still sharing those family picnics and day trips they were famous for…..only now with the newest generation.  I wish I knew how many picnics my mother packed in her lifetime!

There were some sad discoveries…..on April 29, 2000, my parents, Gommy and Poppaw, were photographed with my sister’s family as their granddaughter, Elizabeth, was dressed and ready for her Junior prom.  My father passed one day shy of a year from that photo, the day of Elizabeth’s Senior prom.  If we had only known when that photo was taken, we only had a year remaining with my Dad…..

The only gap in all these years of pictures was during the time of my Dad’s illness and passing…..we didn’t feel like celebrating.  In those first holiday pictures that followed, his absence was so pronounced; the void was as obvious as the sadness in my mother’s eyes.

Our generation no longer have photo albums but keep our photos on our phones.  My photo library is now loaded with pictures of my grandchildren, documenting their smiles, celebrations, holidays and everyday activities.  Once again, it is all so very clear how life goes full circle.  I have accumulated photos representing five generations.

Life is fleeting… moves on and generations pass…..

What a gift it all is!  What a treasure our grandparents and parents are!  What a blessing our children and grandchildren are!  How strange it feels as we transition from one generation into the next… move from being the child and grandchild into being the parent and grandparent.  To see the look of love in my parent’s eyes as they look at me… is the same look of love I have when I look at my children…..and that my children have as they gaze at their little ones.

Life is fleeting… it to its fullest, laugh every day, cherish the ones you love, make memories, appreciate the little things, let go of grudges and differences, sit in the sunshine, forgive one another, show kindness to others, enjoy the fresh air and outdoors, always rock your babies, hug those you love…..

Life on this earth is fleeting…..but we have been promised so much more.  As a child of God, I am so grateful I will have an eternity with my Heavenly Father and I will be reunited with those who are so precious to me.

P.S.  – take the photos

In my Father’s house are many rooms.  If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?  John 14:2

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.  Psalm 23:6






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