{Carla} The Photobooth

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Today we welcome Carla for {The Story Behind The Photo}. Carla is one half of the sisters behind Sisters Guild – a boutique packed with style, beauty and joie de vivre. Their blog is filled with Carla’s crafts, stories of their childhood, fulfilling dreams and showcasing their stunning wares. Carla’s energy and love shine through in her work and I am proud to call her a friend. ~ Kat M

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When you invited to me look at my photos to find one that tells a story, I thought Hey, this is easy I have so many pictures I can think of already. Great. There are thousands upon thousand of pictures that tell the story of a day we remember together, so many of my children that show their characters true to who they are that capture them, capture time and capture tales of their childhood. But, I feel as though they are their stories waiting to be told. To be narrated from pages of a book that they must write. So, what pictures do I have that I can tell the story of? Then, there it was staring me right in the face quite literally. A picture with a story that is still being written.

I don’t have many pictures of me when I was young so this one taken in a photobooth in Bath aged 2 1/2 years old has become a treasured image and probably the reason why I spend so much of my time looking through the lens of my own camera; a determination to capture and pass down memories especially when so many memories fade, so many days and journeys forgotten.

This photo, a passport photo, taken as the family headed off on a journey across Europe and into northern Africa where we lived for a year might not seem as though it tells a story. Taken at a time that I hold memories of but perhaps more from stories retold rather than my own. I’m wearing a jumper that both tickled and itched my neck at the same time and a duffel coat with bone toggles that were always cold and smooth and was most probably my sisters before me.

Though to you this picture may seem a rather routine, unremarkable photo to me it is full of colour, of sound and smells but most of all promise.

Here she is a little girl barely three years old with her life in front of her, waiting to be shaped, waiting for adventure, for all that life holds, for love, for dreams to come true. It is a photo that holds more than the green-eyed girl in her sisters’ hand-me-down duffel coat. It is a photo that holds my future promises, the dreams I had when I was young. A picture that holds the innocence of childhood ambition in which anything is possible and nothing is out of reach.

The picture has become to mean so much, an old friend painted it for me. It now hangs on a wall in my home and reminds me of the little girl with so much promise, and so many dreams. To make her proud every day, to do all that I can to make my way, to fulfill the promises I made to myself about who I would be. It navigates me back to myself, to my dreams anticipated, and prompts me to grab each day as I grow as though held to a commitment to myself made so many years ago.

Now that I have my own children it reminds me to listen to my own daughters dreams, to hear them and to remind me how important dreams are, the dreams that lie so deep within us. The dreams I want to help rise up, and help my own daughters to reach by bringing them up in such a way that they too can look back and say ‘ I did it’, ‘I’m still doing it’, ‘I’m still fulfilling my dreams everyday’ and ‘I am proud of who I have become’. Because sometimes dreams like memories are forgotten and so we should capture them, hold them so that we may hold up to them and never let go. To remind us to never forget our future promises, the messages we would send to our older selves and reminders of what we wanted to be and can still.

Though the picture, to my own daughters, just reminds them that yes, I was young once. I once I had green eyes and believed in all the dreams I had before me. Though my eyes are now a tiger shade of brown my dreams are still inside of me, still before me.

In case you’re wondering the girl in the photo is proud, though she never did dance with Fred Astaire, she did go on to accomplish almost all those things on her list, but the story hasn’t finished yet and there are still more dreams I have yet to fulfill.

Sometimes looking back powers you look forward.

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