Adventure Guy arrived home from Texas earlier in the week with a treasure trove packed in dilapidated boxes. Sleeve after sleeve of slides dating from 1965 to 1983 now sit on our study’s floor, waiting to be scanned.
I hadn’t taken a look until this evening, when I joined Adventure Guy in the sorting. Waves of feelings hit me as I held slide after slide up to the light, glimpsing a family that no longer exists as a unit. My 23 year-old mother-in-law holds her baby and stands by her 24 year-old husband who’s just returned from Vietnam. The three of them stand with my father-in-law’s parents, the stiff body language conveying that the iciness I sometimes feel from him was learned by example.
After I closed the lid on those young people–still full of hope and oblivious to the eventual demise of their marriage– I scanned the titles and years of the remaining stacks. When I spotted a box labeled “College Station,” I couldn’t resist finding out what Texas A & M, alma mater to not only Adventure Guy and me but also both of our fathers, looked like circa 1970.
And it was then I found my absolute favorite slide–a four-year old Adventure Guy standing in front of the building where he’d propose to me twenty years later. With that, I decided to call it a night, thankful not only that the cute little boy in the red jacket grew up to be my husband but also that he learned a few things along the way about the kind of family he wanted to create for himself. The kind of family we’re busy building every day here in Suburbia.