Can life moments be captured by a photo or a memoir piece? I no longer keep thoughts or deeds journals. I never really succeeded when I tried. Snippets here and there, a moment in a decade, a blurry photograph. If low and confused, I write stuff down, as a way to decode, I guess, the importance of the blow I feel at the moment, rather than chronicle the entire event in details.
Something in me feels that there will be endless opportunities to catch all that is worth catching and this moment is repeated often enough that it is not worth clogging that memory stick waiting in the hole of the laptop.
I carry my phone everywhere these days; but I seldom use all its functions. Taking pictures takes me out of the action, becoming someone I am not. Besides, I rather receive pictures from others; and then, in a state of nostalgia for things and people I met across my journey, for the person I used to be in the moment someone else captured, I can enjoy and appreciate the event and all its facets again and again. What it seems to be, this reluctance of mine, is a distaste for posing rather than a distaste for recording. Also, it is a distaste for relegating life to snippets, to blurry arrangements that are neither artistic, nor realistic. In the moment of a picture being taken, we, the subjects, are being frozen out of our moment, literally.
Perhaps, my dislike for picture taking has to do with my realization that what is happening may not be what was meant to happen; what was detailed to happen in the plan we all made before the event took place.
Or, it is my desire not to be disappointed. You see, I used to keep lists and construct elaborate plans for my life. Financial plans; food plans; career plans; educational plans...There was never a week when I didn't have a detailed weekly menu and grocery list; when I didn't maneuver my numbers to come up with more money for savings, for vacations, for those piano lessons. I excelled at planning.
At work, when processes such as , "Strategic Planning", "Total Quality Control"; and "Risk Abatement" were bantered about, I jumped on the "Bandwagon" and schooled myself in these strategies. I wanted to be the first and the best, eager and willing to implement new and improved methods and strategies I read about in the journals I subscribed to, or the workshops I attended.
(I never did take pictures at these events. If pictures were taken, and later became adverting for future events, I felt a sense of disappointment, and betrayal, as though a moment in time capturing two, three groups at a training could stand for weeks of pouring through notes and manuals, for mastering difficult ideas and making them fit in comfortably with current practices.)
What was a long professional quest, to become state- of- the- art with vision, mission and strategic planning, accounting for all the factors that might derail or spur the team from or to success, such long planning could never be captured in one, two pictures, in one two sentences.
Can we really capture things, frame them in a few words when they are constantly changing?
Life, private or professional, has a way to slip through, reach out and faze out processes even before they are mastered, becoming distracted when something new hits the shelves. We no longer spend a lifetime mastering anything, as new tools appear right at our fingertips promising everything we were missing. We no longer know what to trust when something hits the market.
We can't even trust our memories or the memories of those who came before us, the ancient wisdom that chronicled and provided needed wisdom for the future.
As I watch my daughter implement Montessori learning opportunities for her toddler, I smile and rejoice. Maria Montessori's wisdom is still alive and thriving. Everything old is new again. Who knows, something I might have said or done will still survive past my lifetime.
Perhaps I should take a picture, or a video of this day. Some thing needs to be written down and recorded so when we feel neglected or disappointed by our present we can retrieve the past and begin anew. Remembering doesn't come naturally for many people. Writing things down or painting a picture may just help us see the folly or the glory of past days.