In my head, I have a movie of my family that I started filming I when I was about 5 years old. Included in my movie are my aunts, uncles and cousins from England.
I went several decades without seeing any of them and when I returned in 1997, all my cousins were all grown up, many with children of their own. But I still flashbacks and hear their voices and see him in my mind they way they were in the 1970s. Even when I see them post on Facebook today, the image in my mind’s-eye is of them in the 1970′s.
The Child met many of those same relatives in 2009 when she was about a dozen years old. We both saw the same family members, but I saw my cousins as older versions of their younger selves. The Child was introduced to them as adults. She will never see that one cousin playing in cowboys and indians, or that other cousin singing Elvis tunes, or that other cousin singing “We Don’t Need No Education”. She will remember holding the bunny with that cousin at Old MacDonald’s farm and flying simulators with another.
All the family stories are intertwined, like some kind of Quentin Tarantino work. Mabye it’s not so important who has which memories, just that there are opportunities to build them.
Ironically, after I publish this piece, I am going to go out to the garage to find some 8mm movies of my wife’s cousin to take to him and his family this week. The movies are of her cousin at his first birthday party. We want to show his daughters.
Who do you still see with the eyes from your childhood?