I'm still plugging away at my 365 portrait project and recently, I've been trying to apply a specific memory or feeling to photos rather than just taking photos. For these two photos I was thinking of my childhood. I don't usually like talking about it, because I don't want people to think that I feel sorry for myself, because I absolutely do not. Im actually lucky.
When I was very young, my parents divorced, thank goodness. My father was not a good person and that's me being polite about it. My mother and I moved from Arizona to Missouri, to be with my grandmother. My mom struggled. She was trying to take care of me, work full time and go to college to become a physical therapist. After a few years my mom met my step-father, who is a wonderful man and loves my mom very much. But him and my mother were both very poor. My mom finally became a physical therapist and made decent money, but not only did they have to feed me and my step-sister, but also my step-dad's parents. We lived in several different houses, never being able to afford that one for long and moving into something smaller. By the time I was in high school, the house we lived in should have been demolished long ago. The ceiling was caving in, and it was always leaking. There was no heat, there were mice inside my mattress.
It wasn't the ideal situation for young girls, or anyone for that matter. And there were many times when I felt very alone. I laid up at night worrying that I might not ever get out of it. But it made me determined. It made me appreciate anything I was able to buy on my own. I didn't take things for granted. And I still don't.
On Valentine's Day I decided to give back a little. It's something that I should be doing much more often, and I plan to. I bought stuff to make sack lunches to hand out to the homeless that day.
I may have had a roof over my head, but when it's raining and leaking on your head and you're freezing cold, it doesn't feel like it. I can't imagine what it's like to have to deal with that everyday and even if it's just a meal, maybe it will help them get by a little while longer.
I plan to start doing something like this once a week. Whether it be volunteering, paying 100% tip, or taking some pet food to a local animal shelter.
Ok, my terribly long post is over! If you suffered through it, I am giving you a mental hug as we speak.