Thursday, February 12, 2009

Melancholy Views

I believe I understand why most folks love taking photographs or videos of the big moments in their lives and the lives of their family members. It's fun for them to find some time down the road to sit and flip through the pictures or watch the movies and relive happy times and to rekindle memories. However, this has never been the case with me. I have purposefully avoided taking pictures along the road of my life as looking back at these memories and times always seems to bring me a deep sadness. These special moments are gone and will never come again. I will never again get to kiss my wife for the first time, share my wedding vows, hold my daughter for the first time, relive my daughter's first steps, see her little baby face stare back at me in amazement, or share any of her special birthdays. Photographs and remnants of these times only seem to serve to mark for me the passage of time. Just after my daughter finished opening her Christmas presents this year, I was overcome with intense feelings of sadness as the special moment in time was gone and would never come again. All that was left were scraps of paper that for me meant gifts that I had worked hard to plan for and purchase, and then wrap neatly with hope and anticipation. I get the sense that most folks don't have these intensely negative, melancholy feelings. I have trouble living in the moment as I can feel it slipping away even as it is unfolding before my eyes. Maybe this is why I have trouble looking back. It results from an acute sense of my own mortality. Do you ever experience sadness looking back, even if the times you are looking back on were filled with love and laughter?