In times of bitter disillusion by loss and the need to get more modern into her life, my aunt threw out a lot of old stuff from our house. VHS players, Cassette players, Vinyl players. This becomes a problem for someone of my age because the first half of my life was of and recorded on such devices and now I’m left with these ancient artifacts that I can only see when I’m lucky enough to find a player.
I have a collection of home videos from when I was maybe a year old, videos of families gathering for holidays and doing holiday stuff. You see their attempt to be happy but you also get to see the cracks for people who are missing, you see a glimpse of who all these people who have influenced and shaped your life used to be when they were the ones trying to look and be cool, when they were hopeful enough to believe they would have big colorful futures.
I was there for some of it but it’s kinda like I wasn’t. I was too young to remember anything.
There’s one part in particular from the videos I saw that I keep thinking of. It shows me at not older than a year or two, wearing a white tutu holding a raggedy white long eared rabbit doll. someone is recording the video from behind me as I slowly, in my tiny white socks, climb with some scary wobbles but successful balance, a sofa by the window. I look out the window to call someone I assume is on the other side. I don’t know if it’s okay to include her name in this entry but just know I was calling it out the only way someone that young can. Zs and Rs replaced by vowel sounds and non-stop: just over and over. We can’t hear the response in the video but I keep calling and calling. It’s the cutest thing ever. They tell me that’s me but if I wasn’t told that, I probably wouldn’t know that fluffy thing in the window was actually me.
By the way God and I have a lot to talk about my glow up when we meet.
So I stop watching the video and I try to remember who in the hell this person I am calling is and I can’t remember. I ask my aunt and she said she was a relative of ours. When I was baby, she used to come to our house a lot and I liked her so much I carried her name on my tongue all the time.
For someone who meant this much to me back then, it kind of makes me think in wonder how I don’t really remember any of it or any of them. It makes me think about my little cousin who is also a child now, carrying everyone’s names on his tongue and perhaps in ten years, unable to remember any of it.
We don’t make home videos anymore.