I love this photograph and when I lost it because I couldn't bear to see anything remotely married like I choked and cried and waited a while and finally took it off the wall. It sat in it's frame behind a piece of furniture but even that wasn't enough. Eventually I removed it from the frame and burned it over the sink. I was big on burning things in 2009.
Apparently this was on my hard drive and not sure how it got there. I must have copied all of the documents from the original Dell onto the new Dell seven years ago and then those files had been backed up and given to me on a flash drive. They were copied down by folders without any sort of notice. I had whatever I had, landmines be damned.
Now I have this, the most beautiful photograph of me with my children and it's not because we're wearing beautiful dresses and a tux. Maybe the beautiful dresses had something to do with how we're being but this photograph captured who we were with each other when no one had the least bit of angst going on. My first two children were very angsty. They outgrew it for the most part.
I was quite certain I'd never be able to look at it again but here I am nearly eight years later and nothing blew up when I looked at it. I still don't want to see the man but that's more about who he is and what he did than the hurt of abandonment and loss.
I was quite certain I needed to lose the licorice pants and DEFINITELY lose the blue jacket because that was such a nurturing thing and just like his except his was green and he used to put it on me when I was very cold. I didn't want to give up the blue jacket. It's truly wonderful. It's a front zip sweatshirt with unexpected weight and a lining very much like fleece but bulkier. But I could not even look at the thing. When I was stowing away the licorice pants, because I couldn't bring myself to do anything else with them, I looked for the blue jacket but it had vanished. I considered myself fortunate. Yesterday when I was puling out furniture to vacuum I bumped a box holding Christmas stockings and a few other things that really need a home. From under the pile of stockings a blue sleeve stuck out and I wondered if I'd shoved it there intentionally. I haven't removed it; it's still radioactive with a half life of four or five years (I have nothing on which to base those numbers, they just are). The thing is, I might be able to wear it again once past the half life or wherever it's safe. If the memories associated with that photograph can wash away then there's no reason that jacket can't be serviceable again someday.