Kiki Halbert Designs

Thursday, December 20, 2007

So I thought I would join the blog carnival for the first time ever. I wanted to post a little something that I contributed to Kim Higueria's newsletter awhile ago. I hope you enjoy it. If it inspires you, I'd love to see the layouts you produce, if you feel up to sending me a link.

Scrapbooking Emotions

One of the challenges that I faced when taking up my new hobby of scrapbooking was journaling. I think it’s a challenge that faces many people who start scrapbooking their memories. How do you explain the circumstances around the photo? How do you explain what you were feeling when you took those pictures. For many, expressing their emotions in words is a challenge indeed, especially when a photo has sentimental value, or scrapping a picture of a loved one who has since passed away.

But while it is a challenge, at the same time, journaling your emotions can be quite cathartic. It can help you to face fears, remember fond memories with joy and sometimes tears. For me, scrapping a photo of me holding one of my nephews as a baby started out as a loving, sweet memory. But I scrapped a very different emotion. I scrapped a feeling of loss, mourning, grief. You see, when I was younger my brother and I had a contest of sorts. We always said that when each of us got married, we would have the first grandchild, and for the other siblings, the first cousin. So my brother got married, and won the contest, with three adorably sweet children. They are all near and dear to my heart. I, however, married older, and with my frail health, and other circumstances, have resigned myself to not having children. I won’t go into the details, but it has taken me a long time to come to terms with this. So when I sat down with this photo of me holding my nephew, such a tender moment, my emotions came flooding forward again about how I was holding my brother’s child, and not my own.

I decided to face that emotion head on, and scrap the emotions that best described how I felt – those of grief, mourning and loss. And after I completed the layout I realized how I had tried to bury feelings, repress them and that was much harder on me than expressing them. I felt relief and a sense of a weight lifting off me once those emotions were put to the page. Now, hopefully you won’t have to scrap those emotions in your journey to scrapbooking your photos. But I wanted to show you how cathartic journaling your emotions can be.

On the other side of the coin, we also have a tendency to let our joys and happiness fade far too quickly, because of the stresses of everyday life. So journal your happiness, the bliss, the joy you felt when you took pictures of your son’s first steps, his first bike ride without training wheels, his graduation. Journal your happiness, joy and pride when you scrap pictures of your daughter’s first bath, her first pony ride, her first class play, her prom, her wedding.

Journaling is such a power part of scrapbooking. Don’t take it for granted that once you have a title to your page, that your job is done. Journal those emotions!


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