Click on photo above to enlarge.
In his book, Gone the Sun, Winston Groom wrote about how we lack a way to tell the real stories of our lives, he calls it a life certificate, that remains behind to tell more than the things like when we died, and the "Devoted Wife and Mother" we often see on grave markers.
Our past is more than a series of begats. Where we are here and now is the result of untold generations of people who lived lives, felt emotions, took great risks, did heroic things and even made tragic mistakes; mistakes that sometimes cost them their lives.
My first wife fell asleep at the wheel, apparently, while driving home late at night. Her life ended and the course of so many lives besides her own changed in a moment. The picture above is the only known photo of the day we eloped in 1975, the day after her 18th birthday. I was 19. I discovered the negative to this photo Friday night while going through my old negatives from 1975. I did not know it existed.
I am remarried to a wonderful woman, Susie is the best thing to ever happen to me. Still, we all lived very different lives before and it has passed to me to tell my children and their children the story of both my life and their grandma Candy's life. If not me, then who?