July 3, 2013: Brotherly Love

Mark (left), Matt (right), and me (middle)
My mom recently sent me this photo. I was the baby with my brothers holding my hands. A picture tells a thousand words. Notice how Mark is hesitant, carefully looking down at his fingers through his long eyelashes. Matt, in contrast, is weighing whether to smash my baby fist in his hand.

We all know that this was staged with our mother behind the camera asking her toddler boys to hold their sister's hand. I don't look very happy. My precocious brothers weren't all that thrilled about having a sister either.

Looking at the picture reminded me of the story told on my initial introduction to my brothers. When I was brought home from the hospital, my parents placed me on the bed to show Matt and Mark. Lying on a blanket, they took one look and threw the blanket over my face. Then promptly ran away and continued playing. From day one there was no coddling of their baby sister.

It is interesting how a picture can elicit varying responses. My mom's take was markedly different...

"Look closely - you'll find a redness on your face. Actually it is prickly heat - covered your entire body. I dressed you way too warmly. Your outfit was a white nighty, drawstring bottom with pink embroidered trim, a soft knit fabric....Your dad was working at the barbershop that evening."

My mom's memory stems from her feelings as a mother and a wife. How she felt that moment in time when she snapped the photo. My brothers, just eleven months apart, she frequently dressed as twins. As a young mom busy with three babies; she anxiously awaited for the day to end and my dad's return home.

A found picture can bring back memories that we didn't even know we had. I love old pictures. I'm glad I have a lot of them and I'm even more happy that my mom is the master historian. If there's a story, she either remembers or she researches until found; traits that brings us all warm smiles. Keep sending the pictures, Mom :)


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