Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Reunion Thoughts: A Picture's Worth

Our pictures from the prison visit arrived in the mail today. A friend taught me a few years ago how to recognize them. Tan clothing. Mural background, sometimes a nature scene, sometimes an animal, sometimes the generic Walmart Portrait cloth.
They are the only pictures in existance of my son with his biological father. In 19 months of parenting him and 3 years of foster care, no pictures were taken or saved.

These are priceless. And worth the stress and effort and expense. What they are worth to my son I cannot fathom.

It was not my idea to be in any of the pictures, but Sr. insisted that he wanted me to be. "Family Pictures" he said.
All the pictures we have of him (only 3) were taken in prison over the years. All have the same look. I've come to recognize it. Its the "Incarcerated Mask". No smile. No emotion. You can see an example in the pictures of the three of us.
In person, Sr has the quick and easy smile that I know very well in my boys. His face lights up. His eyes sparkle. In pictures, he simply refuses.
"I look too ghetto when I smile" was his response.
"You just met your son" I replied.
"You're right" he said. And he smiled.
Visit: Day One

Visit:Day Two


Andy said...

Those are great! I can only imagine what Greg is feeling. I treasured the first picture I had of me and Iris together.

Anonymous said...

huge humongous tears they are wonderful pics.....Sr looks totally different then I imagined...I was thinking tall skinny and shaven to the nub hair....the photos of him smiling are amazing...Greg has his dads smile...

Anonymous said...

Whew what a very handsome man...he reminds me of that fine actor Morris Chesnut. He and Greg and Eric have similar eyes and smiles.

I was thinking he'd look like that other handsome man, Chris Gardner who wrote "The Pursuit of Happiness"

I am thrilled that you got picture of him and Greg together. I can even see how proud he is of Greg and I can see in Greg's body language how happy he is to be in the picture next to him.


Di said...

Treasures for sure. Greg looks truly happy in all shots.

Anonymous said...

I like the ones where Sr. is smiling best of course and good for you that you got him smiling. They are all wonderful, though, and a treasure too.

Both are very handsome men, and Jen if I were you I'd be practicing my "NOT with MY son Missy!" looks in the mirror every day.


Dorinda Brown said...

Jen - I just completed reading your entire blog. Prior to someone posting a link to it on a forum, I didn't know you, while I still don't I know that you and your family are AWESOME!!!

Just a few comments from a complete stranger :-)

* All of your sons are gorgeous!!
* You are an amazing mother!!
* You are an amazing writer!!!
* Thank you for letting complete strangers have a peek into your lives!
* Bless you for having the courage to complete this journey!!
* Knowing teenage boys, Greg would probably blush if he knew how much he is now in the hearts and prayers of complete strangers!
* I am with the guy in the airport, I see the resemblance between you and Greg. I know it is not biological, although the spirit in your eyes and smiles are perfectly mother and son!!
* The purse… No offense, I am sure you don’t care, although it is probably a knock off! Not sure about there, although here in the States, there are these things called “Purse Parties” where they sell knock off designer purses. Don’t know why I think you need to know this, I sure it doesn’t matter to you one way or another.

Bless you and your family and may you all continue to grow, be happy, loving and a shining example to the world!!!

Unknown said...

Thanks everyone for your comments. I love the pictures, and so appreciate Sr forwarding them to us from the prison. A real act of trust for him, because they are his only copies, but I had asked him to mail them to us so I could scan and copy them for myself. I sent the originals back to him already.

Dorinda - thanks for reading and for your nice comments :) I hope you stick around and keep reading. Life is a little bit crazy right now, but I will get back into adoption thoughts shortly. Ok, in a while. The whole husband in a wheel chair thing is kinda cramping my style :)

Anonymous said...

Jen those are awesome pictures. I know they will be cherished by your family and Sr's family. I am, however, disappointed that you didn't get the "Tahiti" background. ;o) I am proud to take credit for giving Jen the "how to spot a prison photo 101" lesson. All joking aside though I just love the smiles on both the faces of Sr and Greg. Ah, warms my heart to see a big tough man so happy to see his son and a big tough boy happy to see his birthfather.

Mom 2 my boys said...

WOW! I found yor blog through the adoption world, your story and your son have taught me soooo much. What a treasure you all have in each other. The smiles on their faces tell the story!