Yesterday, while wading through some old pics on my computer, I came across these pictures of a very special mini-book I made a while back. I realized I had never shared this book on here before, so I decided to put it up now. I really love this book – is that weird? Eh well…the idea for this book actually woke me up one night and I had to get up and write the idea down so I wouldn’t forget. I wanted a way to tell the stories about difficult or painful times in my life without dwelling on the negative - choosing instead to focus on the positive or the lessons learned. I wrote the journaling as if I was someone else talking about me…does that even make sense?Anyway, I typed the journaling out for each set of pages, since it is hand-written and may be hard to read – the journaling for each picture is on the back of the page.
Inside front cover and page 1 (front & back).
Page 1 front reads: “This girl thought she’d always be Daddy’s little girl.”
Page 1 back reads: She was the center of his world – car rides, special gifts, daddy games. He adored her – she loved him. Then when she was 4 ½ everything changed. He changed. He decided he didn’t want to be a daddy anymore. He left. For years she held onto the hope that he would come back – be her dad again. Over the years, he drifted in and out of her life – until she was 16 and she told him not to come back until he wanted to be her dad. She realized she was okay without him.
Front & back of page 2
Front reads: This girl thought having a new dad would be great.Back reads: She wanted to have a daddy again. Her mom re-married when she was about 7 years old & she thought, cool! New dad plus, bonus – another brother and a sister. How fun! How wrong. He wasn’t fun. He was mean. She watched him hit her mom. She refused to cry when he hit her. She learned about true strength when she watched her mom walk away – even though she was terrified he would follow. Years later, when her mom found husband #4, she learned what it meant to truly have a dad.
Front and back of page 3
Front reads: This girl thought her mom had it easy.Back reads: Her mom got to stay up late. She got to watch TV whenever she wanted. She got to go places and buy stuff. This girl thought it wasn’t fair. She was so very wrong. Her mom had very little time to herself. Her mom had very little money. Her mom worked two and sometimes three jobs just to pay the bills. Her mom did without things she needed so her kids could have the things they needed and wanted. Her mom spent many sleepless nights wondering where the money was going to come from. Her mom worked as a welder, a vending truck driver, a factory line worker – she did sewing and crafts – whatever it took. She sacrificed time with her kids, time for a social life, time for her self – just to make it through. This girl didn’t realize how hard her mom had it – how hard she worked – until she became a mom herself. Then she understood – then she appreciated.
Front and back of page 4
Front reads: This girl thought they would be friends forever.Back reads: They met in forth grade and by fifth grade they were inseparable – two peas in a pod. Partners-in-crime. They liked boys together, got in trouble together, cried together, laughed together. They were best friends. All through Jr. High and High school – hours on the phone, learning to drive, falling in ( & out) of love. After high school, they went to different colleges & the separation began – slowly at first, gaining speed. After her friend divorced this girl’s cousin and remarried, their lived were in different places. They had drifted apart and lived miles from each other. And even though their kids would know each other as cousins do – she missed her friend terribly, she wished her the best in life. She learned to hold tight to the memories because sometimes friends don’t stay friends.
Front and back of page 5
Front reads: This girl thought there would always be time for us.
Back reads: They started dating in eighth grade – she was kind of scared; he was kind of loud. But they clicked. They fell hard. He loved her & she loved him. They talked for hours. They fought like lovers. They broke up. They got back together. They always got back together. They just couldn’t stay apart. Until the day he took his own life. She was lost & blamed herself. Finally she forgave him…and herself. She could move on and always remember.
Front and back of page 6
Front reads: This girl thought he would wait while she chased her dreams.
Back reads: She met him at the end of her junior year and by the start of her senior year, she was a goner. For the second time in her life, she was in love. He was older than her and made her feel special. By the end of her senior year, they were engaged. He was ready to settle down – she was ready to chase her dreams. There was no happy medium. She left; he moved on. Years later she still wonders, “what if…”
Front and back of page 7
Front reads: This girl thought she didn’t want kids.Back reads: She was in college – on her own (more or less). She was chasing her dreams. She was loving her life. She had plans – and she thought kids weren’t in them. She was wrong. She was 19 when she got pregnant. She was scared. She wasn’t sure she could handle it. She discovered that the thing she never thought she wanted was what she needed – and wanted – more than anything…kids.
Front and back of page 8 and the inside of the back cover.
Front reads: This girl thought he was the one.
Back reads: She was looking for love – she thought she found it. She should have known when he wouldn’t commit. She should have known when he wanted to live together rather than marry. She should have known when he was mean to her son. She should have known when he cheated and lied. She loved him but she didn’t trust him. After almost seven years together, she knew. She left. She took the best things with her – her two boys – that’s all she needed.
Back cover reads: This girl thought she would be okay and that life was good…she was right.