the first picture is of my family circa november 1980 shortly after moving to alaska. i feel pretty confident my mother will want to wring my neck for posting this picture (she's not a fan of pictures of herself), but it's the only picture i could find of the four of us.
the collage is a compilation of pictures from my senior year in high school. my mother left on the day after thanksgiving in november 1990, exactly 10 years after the first picture. i didn't know it at the time, but that ended up being one of the most pivitol moments in my life. i think everyone looks forward to their senior year in high school, and i was no different. however, i was so disappointed that my mother was not there to share in the experience. a couple of months after leaving, she informed my father she wanted a divorce. then my father went away - not physically, but emotionally. as a teenager, i had mixed feelings about this. i was of course devistated at the thought of my parents getting divorced, and it affected every day of my senior year. however, there was also a part of me that felt a little liberated. my parents had been pretty strict while i was growing up, and i suddenly had no parenting. i was able to get away with a lot more than i had previously and had so much fun. however, one of the problems was, since my parents were essentially gone, i was left with the responsiblity of taking care of my sister (see previous spt entry). looking through the pictures from my senior year, i look incredibly happy. i mean, look at that scary one of me with the giant head and double chin - i don't think it's possible to smile any bigger than that. my way of dealing with loss of my family was to throw myself into my social life, and avoid the situation as much as possible. it wasn't until i graduated and moved away that the full force of the change really hit me. i still mourn the loss of my family on a regular basis. it is as if once the unit dissolved, our relationships with one another changed forever, and things have never been the same.