Monday, April 23, 2012

Vivianna Week, Day Eight: Sarah Botting

Today's post for Vivianna Week (Part Two) comes from Sarah Botting, aka Pointycat69, who so graciously offered up a very sweet post. Enjoy!

Reading the first few posts for Vivianna Week made me think of photos. The first one that came to mind I took over Easter; my sister with her 5 month old son. Not a picture I can include given she was breastfeeding him at the time (maybe it was a little unfair of me to take a photo at that point, but sometimes that’s what big sisters are for!). Gwyn had been dressed in a superman costume complete with cape; he’s being held up to feed and he looks as if he’s flying. And Hannah is looking down at him and I can see the love in her face.
I’m not maternal, not even vaguely. Babies confuse me. But looking at that picture makes me understand a little.

And that made me think of other photos that mean a lot to me. Some of them make me smile; my sister’s wedding, her graduation, my graduation, pictures of my family with silly expressions or doing silly things – there’s a lovely one of my dad in the garden with one of the cats draped over his shoulders. It isn’t a very flattering picture of either him or the cat to be fair but it dad is smiling and the picture always makes me smile.
Some of the photos are very precious to me; I have one of mum holding me while I was still a baby. She looks so young, younger than I am now, and she has that same expression of love that Hannah has while holding Gwyn.

Mum with me as a baby

Some of the photos make me cry; I have some of my gran, my Nana (on my dad’s side).  She had Alzheimer’s and the photos were taken in the year before she died. She looks so very fragile and confused even with her family beside her. But those memories are still precious for all that they’re sad.

Nana with mum & dad

When I look at those pictures of her I can see how ill she was and I remember how painful I found spending time with her. Alzheimer’s is a cruel illness; she was drifting back into the past, was often upset and paranoid, and could no longer take care of herself. Occasionally she’d realise what was happening to her, how ill she was and she’d be distraught. And we were all trying to smile, to pretend everything was okay so she’d be less upset. Those memories still hurt.
But at the same time I remember that she looked after my sister and me during the holidays. We’d watch TV together, sit in the garden, play dress up and listen to her. She comforted us when family members died. She lived just down the road from us; she was always there when we were growing up. And I loved her. Still do.

So although some of those pictures make me cry I treasure them all.

I'm bi, depressed and easily irritated...and hopelessly addicted to tea (black, no sugar please!). Courtesy of the depression I’ve been unable to work for a bit now; in the meantime I paint, draw, bead, knit and read a lot – which means I have no floor or shelf space as well as bags of wool stuffed under the chairs. Next hobby will take up less space. Honest!


  1. Lovely post!
    I don't take nearly enough pictures as I should. They are great way to preserve memories and when I was little, I loved looking through my mom's photo albums.

  2. Finally the evil blogger lets me in, yay! Erm, not Vicktor or Sarah... I mean blogspot. Would not let me in earlier!!!

    Sarah, lovely, lovely post. So precious, the connections we have with one another.

  3. I just loved your post. Thanks so much for sharing this!

  4. Thank you Sarah for such a beautiful post. I so appreciate you sharing this and the pictures (and I'll say it again, you are beautiful!)


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