Friday, August 10, 2007

Our House

Sydney's new class (commonly referred to as "The Twos") is working on a project focused on the home. Each child was asked to bring in photos of their home and families, and the teachers have helped them create pieces showcasing their photos and describing the child's home life. After fishing around for pictures that did not include 1) a binky , 2) a Katrina 'X' or 3) a basket of unfolded laundry, I finally settled on a couple of mediocre pictures of the three of us and one shot of the banner Cade put up when we finally came back to New Orleans in mid-November 2005. The banner--which nearly pushed me over the crumbling cliff of emotional equilibirum I had been trying desperately to maintain--read:



He hung it in the space between the living and dining rooms, where it stayed for months. It hurt to take it down--maybe it felt like an omen, like bad karma or something--and when we finally did take it down I packed it carefully in a box and stored it in the back room, where it has remained and will remain until she comes of age and I force her to assume responsibility for her own mementos. The banner is, to me, a reminder of that homecoming, which was horrible and sad and confusing but felt so good, it was so good to be home with our two-month-old daughter, who we were sure would come to love the city with the very same fervor. The banner was about struggling, and hoping, and coming back.

I included this photo out of desperation, mostly; I was already way behind in getting the pictures to her teacher. And it was so interesting to see it up on the wall that afternoon when I came to pick Sydney up, alongside a paragraph that read something like: My parents hung this banner when they brought me home from the hospital. Everyone was so excited to meet me!
Well yes--that was how it should have been. In reality the situation turned out quite differently.

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