Ancient History

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Eight days

A few years ago, when we were preparing to move, I found an undeveloped roll of film from one of our old cameras. I had no idea what images were housed in the little cannister, but I was excited to find out. The next time I went to the grocery store, I dropped to roll in the one-hour developing bin.

The photos turned out to be a batch from our honeymoon, nine years earlier. They were taken with my husband’s camera, which was having issues at the time. I think we figured the photos wouldn’t develop properly, so we never bothered with the roll. We were newlyweds and wanted to save the $5.95 processing fee.

I couldn’t wait until we got home, ripping into the envelop as we sat in the car. Most of the photos were blurry, but there were a few gems. It was like seeing our honeymoon from a different point of view—like stumbling across another person’s photos of mountain scenes which happened to include us.

We haven’t used a film camera in close to eight years. Now I am all-about my digital Canon.

Recently, I managed to fill my 2.0 GB memory card. A Canon Moment was occurring, so I scrambled through the camera bag to find another memory card. I loaded the first card I grabbed into the camera, only to find it too was full. I was ready to erase it when I thought I better see what was on it, having no recall of what pictures could possibly be clogging it up. I started the slideshow and nearly began to cry.

I saw about 50 photos taken between September 16th, 2006 and September 24th, 2006. Eight lost days, when Beatrix was between 8 and 16 days old. The card was a small 64 MBs, used for the rare (obviously) backup. I never uploaded them. I forgot about them. It’s strange to think I’ve been toting them around in a camera bag all this time.

Seeing them again was like seeing her for the first time. Yes, I have about 1,000 other photos of her first few months of life that I’ve seen over and over. But these were new and there are some truly great photos.

They include the only photos I have of me nursing her. The bonus? Joel had fallen asleep standing up, resting his head on my lap as I fed his new baby sister.



I was happy to find beautiful pictures of my dear mother-in-law meeting Beatrix for the first time:



And then there were photos of just her—sleeping, yawing, eyes open, fists clenched, profiles, full face shots, her feet, bundled in her carseat. Eight days, regained.


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