Yesterday I had the privilege of photographing my mom’s hometown, about 30 minutes away, for a sibling reunion they’re having in June. It started with a stop at the church she used to attend.
Then we went to main street. And was that a sight to behold.
The barber shop that was there when my mom was a kid, is still there and still open.
The building on the left was a drugstore and the pizza place used to be a bowling alley.
And this was the movie theater.
When we walked in…
Definitely a small town. Mom named off each and every one of these guys, all of whom she grew up with. The second guy on the left was her prom date back in the day! It was so cool to meet these people from Mom’s childhood. You can’t see it in the picture but on the wall further off to the right is a light that remains from the old movie theater. I tried imagining in my head what it might have looked like back then.
And this was the land Mom grew up on. She said there was a house, a barn, chicken coops, and the whole she-bang. And now….
The only thing left is the driveway.
I met Mom’s prom date. I met one of her ex-boyfriends. I met her best friend she has growing up, and who saw her through her rough divorce with her first husband. I met two other women she went to school with. I saw the home she owned and lived in before her divorce. I saw the church she used to go to, that someone bought and converted into a beautiful home.
I loved seeing and learning about my Mom’s childhood and a little bit of her past. I’ve always admired my mom. She does so much every single day, she has so much love for her family, and she has been through more than I could ever imagine in her long lifetime. She’s a woman of wisdom, one I only hope I can be as smart and strong as someday.
When we were leaving, I asked her: “Does it make you sad to see your childhood home all gone?”
And she replied, “Yes, but we can’t go back. If I were to go back, I’d be a kid again.”