I love this picture. It took me a bit to come to terms with it, since in it I am a little kid and in my teen years I didn’t want to be reminded of that. But as I grew older I made my peace with it. Our family has grown much since then but this is the original bunch – minus Dad who was taking the picture. He was always there, the forever photographer.
From left to right are Sylvia, Mom, Betty, Barb, Nancy, and in the front little Bobby, as I was known then. There are only 3 of us left now – Mom died in 1979, Dad in 1987, Betty in 2010, and Sylvia this past August. I miss them all indifferent ways and at different times. Betty’s birthday is today and so I especially feel her loss now. My sisters were very good to me growing up and we shared many happy memories. We are a family and still are and I realize more each year how special that is, especially when I encounter others who did not have that.
Recently I have had the occasion to look back on scenes of the past, while going through Sylvia’s stuff. I could reacquaint myself with the gawky pictures of me in the photos of Sylvia and Don. There were other family pictures – including one of Sylvia and Barb and Mom when both sisters were very young. Mom looked great and my sisters were cute.
I have realized more and more the importance of not only recognizing the memories and sharing experiences I can have with my sisters and family, but the importance of expressing my love to them. We tend to assume that loved ones know that we love them, but we also need to express it. And realize that treasure is not contained in physical things, but in the relationships we have. No matter the relationships you have, whether family or otherwise, make sure you let those people know what they mean to you. Let them know how they have helped you along, made your life more fun and fulfilling. And let them know how important they are to you. Don’t wait to just remember. Speak the love now.