January 9, 2010

Found Family

Yesterday, I was inspired by a post from Amy at Ponder and Stitch, in which she ponders about the lives of an unknown family, whose antiquated portrait she holds dear. I hate to be unoriginal here, but I was so glad to know I'm not the only one who's keeping old portraits hanging around, that I thought I'd share my story, too. On New Year's Eve 1999 I decided to do some digging through the storage unit in my apartment complex. I'm not sure what drove me to do such a thing at all, let alone on what was supposed to be the biggest party-night of my young life. But amidst all the cobwebs, dustbunnies, and clutter, there was one small cardboard box full of promise and romance. There in the darkness of the storage unit, I opened the small box to find hundreds of ancient polaroids, news clippings, birth and marriage certificates, and passports. I had stumbled upon the archives of someone's life!

I took the box upstairs, and passed the last hours of the century piecing together the pictures and documents - stringing together her story. Her name now evades me, all these years later. Her story is burned in my brain: a young girl, working as a secretary in the midwest, meets a charming young man from British Honduras, leaves home to marry him, travels the world, and tragically passes away at twenty-four. And I can never forget her face. I tried for some time to locate any survivors, but as she had no children, and was the youngest of her family, there were none. Since finding the box, and learning her story, I have become her survivor. I restored some of the old polaroids, and have kept her in a proud place on the walls of my home since that night.

1 comment:

AmongTheRuins said...

What a mysterious and wonderful story! What an incredible find! I love that you restored her picture and you keep her memory alive. I really enjoyed reading. :D