This picture was taken just over a year ago in the Philippines in September 2002. My Dad and his sweetheart, Tosca, were to be married in a few hours and I was almost ready, along with my sister, to help escort him down the aisle.
I took the picture of myself to remember the lovely job done by the professional hair and makeup ladies and hoping that I could reproduce the nice eye makeup some day in the future. I rarely get quite so dressed up so I wanted to have a record of the occasion.
It’s a snapshot of the times. My husband was with me in the Philippines and we’d been married for almost two years. Dad was shortly to begin a new life with his second wife. My sister and her husband had two typical three and five year old little girls.
They say the eyes are the windows to the soul. When I look at this picture I see thirty years of life experience in my eyes, but I also see the absence of what was to come .. experiences I carry with me now, of what would be the hardest and, at the same time, the most joyful year of my life.
Today, my husband and I have a gorgeous little boy, three months old. He’s one of the most content babies I have ever met and, as almost every parent says, he makes our life an absolute joy. I can’t imagine life without him and wonder if I’ve ever done anything as important as being a good Mum for him. Some days I feel love for him so intense that I wonder if my heart might burst simply because it can’t contain it all.
Dad and Tosca have been married for over a year and Tosca is now expecting her first child. In another seven or so months I’ll have a baby sister or brother, a new experience for me, since there was previously only my older sister and myself. Dad will be going through the whole ‘children thing’ again, but I know that he’ll love it just as much the third time around more than thirty years later. Perhaps he’ll love it even more, now that he’s much more mature than the oh-so-young nineteen years of age he was when my sister was born. I know that Tosca will adore having her own child. She was born to be a wonderful Mum.
My sister’s two little girls are a year older and the whole family has been through a lot since the youngest, Britt, was diagnosed in mid-August this year with Leukaemia. She celebrated her fourth birthday in hospital. She’s been having chemotherapy and is now officially in remission, but treatment must continue for about another eighteen months. It’s heartbreaking that the cure is almost as bad as the disease.
Looking back on this picture makes me realise how much can change in a year.
.. And now I must go, because my baby boy is calling and I love him very much.
Coralie (Brisbane, Australia)