Photo disconnect

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As I ever so slightly lift myself off a black leather chair to alleviate the pain from sitting for two straight hours with pink rollers in my hair, freshly done manicure and pedicure, and a full face of cakey makeup, I proceed to sort frilly and ornamented dresses into piles of “yes,” “no,” and “maybe” with the help of four strangers. At the end, 11 dresses are transported to a cramped fitting room for me to later take professional Asian pictures.

Something that always annoyed me about my family was how they could spend hours upon hours just taking pictures and documenting their memories. Whether it was pictures of themselves, animals, or beautiful scenery, I loathed how much time they would fixate on getting the perfect lighting or trying to make their forced smiles into something that looked more natural. “Just five more pictures” would turn into 30 and then to 50.

My disregard for capturing memories made it obvious that I wasn’t the sentimental type. At first, I didn’t really care about my apprehension towards photos and souvenirs. However, as I prepare to walk on stage for a piece of paper commemorating my time in prison— I mean school, I wonder if my lack of desire to take photos is a reflection of how I lack motivation to do anything, especially something long term or outside the comfort of my room.

Notifications alarming me about my lack of iCloud storage would always prompt me to delete photos in my camera roll, but most of those photos are just pictures of whiteboards, notes, assignments, and pictures I drew for the school newspaper. I only have six photos of people in my life, and they are all dated five years ago. 

When I look back at those six photos, I don’t really feel anything. My mind can connect the pictures to the events that led up to them with great detail, but for some reason, I don’t look at them fondly. They are just pictures of people who are or used to be in my life. The only reason I haven’t deleted them is because I want to at least say I made some memories even if I don’t care for them as much as I should.

Although I have never known what it meant to be sentimental, I hope that in the future, I can look back on my camera roll and find those six pictures with a few companions.  I want to be someone who is able to connect to their feelings easily and be able to say that their memories are important to them. Maybe one day, I would be able to say “just five more pictures.”

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