It's Five Minute Friday! Time to write for five minutes flat (no stopping, no editing!) on a prompt provided by the lovely Lisa-Jo --- then linking up and sharing a little comment love with other bloggers. To learn more and/or join in, click here.
Nothing. That is probably what this photo would mean to most people. Some might have their own memory association, but no one (even someone who knew me) could know exactly what that picture means to me. Not "means" like "I have strong emotional ties to this photograph" per se, but "means" like "this picture represents a thousand words."
I don't think in words. I have poured years of my life into (attempting to) master the English language, from a burning desire to be heard and understood - because while I can have a perfectly cohesive thought in my mind, outside of my mind it's incomprehensible to others. Except that, after all of my efforts, I'm finding that no one actually speaks English. Definitions change, both the dictionary and the thesaurus are sadly underused, and I can't count the number of times that I've crafted a sentence that perfectly expresses what I want to express only to be met with a blank stare and the request to reword my statement.
So all of my efforts in speech (including overcoming a very thick Southern accent in order to remove even that barrier) are worth... nothing. But when I write, I'm not faced with that. If someone doesn't understand and doesn't want to, I never have to know. If they're willing to use a dictionary or reread something in order to fully gather my meaning, spectacular. And if they both understand and empathize with what I've written - all the better.
In one sense, that's what that picture represents - a difficult lifelong pursuit of something that others take for granted. You see, that doily was crocheted by my great-grandmother. She was naturally left-handed and held the hook in her left hand for that project, but because of the era in which she was born, she was forced to learn to write with her right hand. And her handwriting wasn't just legible - it was lovely. She could have just gotten by, but she made the hard choice to excel. In her beautiful penmanship, she wrote the following in my autograph book:
"Sarah Jo. I am writing this with my right hand, but you know that I am left handed. If a task is once begun, never leave it 'til it's done - be the labor great or small, do it well or not at all. Love, Grandmother King"
So it may just be a too-close art shot of a bit of antique piecework to others... just another image without meaning or purpose... nothing... but to me, it's a cherished memory, a strong reminder, inspiration when I'm floundering, motivation when I'm failing, encouragement when I'm tempted to give up... in a word, everything.
What inspires and encourages you, that may hold no meaning or value to someone else?