Photos are great because they freeze time and allow the moment to live for eternity. I’m incredibly fortunate to have over 100,000 pictures of my life that will enable me to appreciate my 30 years of existence fully.
I remember when I first discovered wallets. Leather trifold wallets that had a pocket for your ID card and several pages to slide in photos of your family.
Wow! What we did before iPhones.
At the time, I was more interested in owning my first leather wallet than the money I should store in it.
Thankfully, my family pitched in to get me a wallet and put some money inside it for me. My cousin Brittany pointed that out to me because I was mesmerized by the genuine leather.
I’m sure I spent the $20-40 fast, as kids tend to do. I hope it at least went to something useful.
I remember I was into western wear before it was popular with my millennial peers. They preferred backward hats and untucked shirts. I, on the other hand, wore clothes beyond my age.
I was very happy and very much loved by my family. My young life was perfect. Boredom, worry, regret, and other negative sentiments came much later for me.
Every day was an adventure, and I enjoyed it to the fullest. Fishing was exhilarating, yet I never actually caught anything.
My early relationship with money was I wanted it solely to redeem it for a Gameboy or PlayStation 2 immediately. Other than that, it just looked cool.
Preppy as I was, I felt no shame. No need to fit in with the other kids; that desire came later. And to be perfectly honest, I never really did, not until college, and even then, not really.
I discovered public speaking at an early age. And even then, I got stage fright. I stared at my prepared notes to avoid seeing the crowd.
But when I spoke, I spoke with the same conviction as I do today. I had strong beliefs in integrity and wouldn’t compromise it for anyone.
I didn’t know it then, but I stood out and did my own thing. I always wanted to fit in, but not enough to change. I was very true to myself.
The above was one of my favorite photos then, and even now, I still like it. I’m just beaming with confidence at that moment. The world was great!
But I inevitably discovered challenges.
Middle school was a rough period. I discovered bullies. And I was learning more about the world. There are fewer photos of me during my 6th and 7th-grade year. I remember them being more challenging times for me.
I eventually changed schools and became an accomplished video editor. I began my journey into videography early. By this time, I had put my brief rough patch with bullies behind me.
And as time went on, my computer skills made me modestly popular. At least intriguing to my peers.
I made many friends.
And I explored my chief interest, video production, further.
But part of growing up is discovering that there is always more that you want to achieve.
And for several years, I pursued those things.
Today, 30 years have passed, and I better understand myself and the world around me. I’m not as carefree as I used to be, but I’m happy fully aware of the challenges that exist and my ability to overcome them.
That’s my life up to this point in a nutshell. The photos remind me of this journey how I got to now.