'Take your hands off your face ..'
'leave me alone I don't want any photos ..'
This is an all too familiar conversation that I had with anyone who tried having my photographs taken! Its been like this for as long as I can remember ..In fact if it wasn't compulsory at the time , I wouldn't even have any school photos...
My relationship with cameras hadn't been always that bad.I was the first born to my family and the very first grand child .That could probably explain the tens of albums my family still keeps of me... a lot of baby photos (A LOT) ...I mean when you think about it for a bit ; at a time when there were only those Kodak cameras where you actually have to collect the films , process the photos then print them out .It feels like a dinosaur's tale now but that's what used to happen,seems like a lot of hard work to me! Man, they were keen!
Some of those photos were actually very cute ,some were a bit embarrassing ..One thing for sure; more photos were taken of me as a toddler than through my teenage and adult years combined !
I barely had any photos when I was growing up..I really can't remember when it started but at some point,I couldn't look through my pics and absolutely hated the way I look in them.... I still think that I'm not photogenic but I'm slightly more comfortable with the idea of being in a photo ..Not really that's a lie !
No seriously , only few years back was when I started to 'voluntarily' appear in photos ..I realised that I was probably asking my brain to remember too much ,unaided!I can totally rely on my memory when it comes to the vibe of places and people but I don't think its fair to hold it accountable to disrupting facts,actual moments , all the faces and the places I didn't want to forget.Its just the way it registers stuff !
Growing up in a city like Baghdad had forced me experience losses of people I care about too early , in utterly unexpected ways . I found out that my iconic memory won't be good enough to remember them for life. I know this will sound very weird but nowadays to resist my first reaction of saying no to a group photo I always ask myself 'Could it be the last time I'm gonna see them?' if the answer is yes even remotely (and it will be if you or them were living in Baghdad) then I gather my energy and smile for the camera :) ..but if there is a even a tiny chance that I'm seeing you tomorrow then...forget it ..leave me at peace :P
you keep smiling best friends !