In this photograph I am not yet 2 years old. My mother’s bicycle is leaned next to the bench where I am sitting.
My mother doesn’t remember the occasion or circumstance under which the photo was taken or where my sister and other siblings were.
I often try to imagine what this little girl, me was thinking.
I am not smiling, rather it seems my attention is focused keenly, else where, rather than at the person taking the photo. Yet, I seem very intense. I don’t have a memory of myself at this age, but I see myself, much younger in my crib, very self-absorbed and feeling as if I don’t need anyone. My imagination is active and I love being alive in that moment.
I believe I have always honoured my child self, perhaps sometimes to the determent of missing opportunities, but I love this child that is me. All the stories my mother and other relatives told me about my child-self indicate that I was happy, loved to laugh and always had a mouth, a rejoiner for everything anyone said to me. Perhaps I knew I would become a a writer.
I do see myself as a little girl being very curious about the environment, and wanting to know everything. I was called a Tom-boy because I enjoyed the outdoors and doing things that supposedly boys did –go off on my own in the woods, climbing tree, scrambling through barbed-wire fences, shooting birds with my sling shot, and lighting and tossing fire-crackers even after a few times they busted in my palm, swelling and staining them with the sulphurous gun-powder.
This little girl is still alive, still curious, still planning adventures and still looking intently at life… I love and celebrate her