Do you remember the days when we took photos simply to capture moments we could look back on in the future?
To have a picture we could proudly show our children and say, “this is where I was when…”
My mum still has photo albums displayed around the house where my sisters and I grew up in Barbados. Whenever I go back, I know there is a special place that holds all my cherished childhood memories.
Photos of places we travelled together as a family, school sports days and Ballet exams, stand proudly in these albums.
These photos are simple. They are not instagram-worthy highlight reels of our lives. They are imperfect and silly and embarrassing.
In one picture, one of my cousins has suffered from that dreaded red-eye effect. In another, my sister’s eyes are closed. In yet another, the wind has blown my friend’s hair in her face, while a stranger is pouting in the background.
There are photos of dancing, laughing and playing. Our wardrobes are embarrassing because we weren’t afraid of looking stupid.
We weren’t afraid because these photos were for us.
There is something beautiful about knowing the world has never seen these photos.
It makes these moments feel intimate, cherished and novel.
Maybe one day we will look back on this moment in time and think how ridiculous we all became, living our lives for likes.
We will laugh when we remember how we pulled our phones out as soon as something exciting happened, instead of enjoying the moment.
We will think how silly it was for us to watch a live concert through a small screen instead of watching with our own eyes.
We will be ashamed of how we retook one picture over and over again until we got the “perfect” shot–that instagrammable shot.
At least I hope this will be the case.
I hope we remember how to live our lives without depending so heavily on social media, because I, for one, am tired of living my life for likes.