Tuesday, July 15, 2008

my life is not in the scrapbooking aisle

Confession: I like to scrapbook.

Actually, I should clarify that statement. Every once in a while I let my kindergarten-self escape to throw a few stickers and pictures on paper to capture a piece of my life and it's...well, magical. This does not mean that I spend hours cutting, arranging, creating or styling pages. I do not compete (yes, there are competitions). When I say "I scrapbook" I feel it necessary to make these distinctions as inevitably I run into someone who is a hard-core scrapbooker, and they get all excited. I feel as though I've let them down when I confess my childish glee at getting my fingers stuck with glue, cutting uneven lines on the photos (though my OCD self has plenty of other thoughts on that) and annihilating all good rules of form and design.

I went to get some supplies today to re-create the last few days of family fun, vacation and Disney World. I've come to the conclusion that my life does not exist in stickers. If I wanted to capture a family gathering or road trip my options were "one big happy family", "it's always great to be together" and other smarmy sentiments. Don't get me wrong, I got those. It's nice to include a component of wishful thinking. But, in reality, I was looking for the "who's this clown", "we're related?" and other comments of a more sarcastic and jocular nature. That, in my opinion, is family. My family.

I've had this thought before about my life not being in the scrapbooking aisle. Usually it occurs when I realize that stickers jump from high school graduation to wedding to baby. Are those my only options? I've done two of the three and feel blessed to have had those experiences. But those are not my sole identity. Nor is popping out kids necessarily the next thing on my list. In all fairness, stickers about career would tend to be boring, and I don't take pictures of myself at work though I do have several from events, programs and random moments. Where am I supposed to put them in a scrapbook?

My inclination is that no six-year-old ever let a lack of stickers ruin an artistic endeavor. Therefore, I will persevere and let my kindergarten-self create whatever mayhem-on-paper seems appropriate. Even if the stickers belie a completely serious, well-adjusted family and a straight sprint to motherhood.

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