The Way They Were

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.

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3 Comments

Filed under Marriage

3 responses to “The Way They Were

  1. It’s ironic that I also recently received a box of 35mm slides from my aunt. I’d like to go through them, but I don’t have a projector. I have no idea how to scan them — can you give me some pointers?

    Mostly, I am delighted you enjoyed that little blast from the past. It is amazing to look at early photos of our partners and see a glimpse of the person they would become.

  2. What a beautiful post. It gave me goosebumps.

  3. The last paragraph is so touching. Left me a bit teary-eyed.

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