this is my final project for photo 2. It’s called the little things.
It’s not what I wanted, due to extreme time constraint and, well, the rushing of a busy life.
Not to mention Monday.. terrible, terrible Monday.
On Monday, my step-sister Leeann was the first person to get ahold of me and check to see if I was safe from the bombs.
I don’t think she’ll ever know just how much I appreciated that.
How incredibly glad I am to have her for a sister.
When I got her message, a flood of memories came back to me.
Of that day when my sisters and I stood in line to the left of my father’s casket, with his mother, brother, and sisters lined up with us.
All of these people were just coming in, making a big U-turn from the entrance, to the casket, and then down our line, giving out condolences like we were a group of kids and it was Halloween.
And I was still in shock. I was stone-faced. I was numb.
And then I saw my stepsisters walk through the entrance of that room, that room that my legs itched to sprint out of.
And Leeann didn’t pause for a second. She didn’t even stop and consider moving through that U-shaped line until she got to my sisters and I.
No, once she was in the room she kicked up her heels and ran straight across the room.
She ran straight over until she was suddenly plowing into me, holding me in a hug I will never forget.
And that was when my tears started to fall.
I felt sad, and I felt loved.
My time in Japan impacted my life more than my friends and family really understand.
One afternoon our family in Nagasaki went out shopping, and we stopped by a friend’s, the incredibly talented Tomosuke Nakayama, shop. He’s an incredible artist, leather-worker and silversmith.
He had a small case in the middle of the shop with smaller items on display & for sale. There were leather bracelets of different sizes, colors, and patterns, and I found one that I really liked. I asked how much it was, and when I went for my wallet he motioned for me not to. He pulled out the beginnings of the same kind of bracelet, and wove the leather into a beautiful pattern, right there for me. He said it’s a gift, and wouldn’t let me pay him for it.
I wear this bracelet every day, and every time I see it I am once again touched by his kindness, and reminded of my loving families and friends in Japan.
It means so much to me, I don’t even know how I’d react if something happened to it.
There’s a reason why girls always love a man that plays guitar.
It’s not just “cool” or a show of talent; it’s one of the most soothing kinds of music out there.
One of the few belongings I possess from my father is one of his guitars. Granted, it’s an old, cheaper one, it’s still mine, and it was his.
My sister Taryn has his Ovation, which is just an amazing piece of my childhood with him..
Every morning I would wake up early, so I would fetch my drawing pads and pencils, and head to the living room in our small apartment, where the windows made the room open and light. I would sit there, cross-legged, and draw until my father woke up, or my sisters came out to join me.
When my father woke up, he would go into the middle room (a room with our furnace and bookshelves between the kitchen and the living room) and take his ovation off of its stand, bringing it into the living room where he’d take a seat at the edge of the couch and play.
He played before breakfast, before brushing his teeth, before dressing. He started his day with his guitar.
And I miss it so much.
This is the ring that my mother wore while married to my father.
They were hippies, huh?
My father also had a heart engraved onto the inside.
My best friend in Japan sent me a package that arrived only a day or two before my birthday.
I love her (and everyone else ) so much.
My eyesight isn’t all that bad, but when I first got my glasses, I was so happily surprised at all I could see. That I could see leaves on the trees outside, instead of just a mass that I knew to be leaves.
This is because of my appreciation for sight; that I can see all the beauty that surrounds me in this world.
“Kristen asked me to save this coat for her when she was 10 years old. Dad“
After my father died, I went back to the apartment, where his sisters and brother were already rummaging through his, and our (my sisters and mine) belongings..
To keep it short and simpler for you, my sisters and I weren’t allowed to keep much, not even of our own belongings.
But one thing that I did get was my father’s jacket.
He always had a leather jacket, and when we were ten years old, he retired one for another.
While “cleaning out” his closet, someone came across this old jacket, with a note in the pocket.
He had saved it for me.
They’re small. They’re remnants of a wound, now closed.
In all technicality, they are a sign of being healed.
But they tend to have so much more to them than you would expect just from looking.
You would never know how medicated I was if you didn’t know me.
This belongs to my best friend, Michael.
His girlfriend gave him this Buzz Lightyear keychain years ago, and he wears it everyday, even though it’s so old that one of his wings has been ripped off, and the paint is partially removed from his face, leaving a pretty frightening visage behind.
But he loves her.