The end of the school year always brings a wave of colorful artwork, exciting essays and lots and lots of amazing things that I cannot bear to throw away. I used to keep all the special things, now I take pictures or scan what I like best and keep very little. Storing things for four kids really puts a dent in our basement storage! Last year I had a free photo book offer and made a fun book of the kids artwork from the school year. Each girl was given about 5 pages to show off their works. I remember thinking that I was going to do this again, only make one book for each girl.
Now that this school year has come to an end I have been thinking about sitting down again and starting to work on the books. Then it just hit me today when I was doing the dishes. I don’t want to separate their work. I don’t want them to leave my home after college with boxes filled with only their projects and pictures. I want them to remember their sister’s pieces to. To be able to track how Elle went from drawing squiggly lines to recognizable pictures. We are a family and always will be a family, even when they have lives of their own. Seperate but together.
I can picture Meg showing her possible future children artwork from 2011 and everyone oooing and aweing at Aunt Mita’s Kente cloth pattern or Aunt Enu’s self portrait. They may live far apart or close together but either way the next generation will have one more tie to the girls Hubby and I are raising today.
Maybe I am more sensitive to this because we are a family who has been through the trials and blessings of older child adoption, who has concentrated on attachment and building bonds. I cannot help but think our society is so individualized in so many ways that we are leaving the importance of family behind. When disaster strikes, illness or death comes round, a financial crisis hits; we all go back to family.
My hope and prayer is that my girls are the best of friends when they are old and gray and I am gone. Do I think family albums are the only factor that will determine this outcome? No, but it sure cannot hurt.