2 weeks ago, I started telling Noam, my son, stories about family members. I wanted to tell him a little about the significant people who have been with me throughout my life. I told him about his great grandfather (my father’s), about his great grandmothe, about my brother Chen, great grandmother Ruth, great grandmother Rushka.
Then I opened my Google photo album, to looked for some pictures of Grandpa Pesach, and did not find even 10 pictures. Something did not make sense to me, after all, all these years I’ve taken endless pictures of my grandfather. Where have all the pictures gone?!… I may have saved them somewhere on the hard drives; I may not have been able to transfer them to my Google Photos account. I kept wondering…
A few days later, I arrived at the famous “Parliament” that takes place every week. Every week, for as long as I can remember, I go to visit my grandparants. When I was little, I would visit my grandparents on Saturday mornings, and for the last few decades the “Parliament” has expanded, and I go to visit my grandmother every Friday, along with my dad and my uncle. That Friday, about two weeks ago, when I visited my grandmother, I told her I had’nt found enough pictures of my grandfather, and immediately my grandmother pulled out 10 photo albums, full of pictures of my grandparents.
I saw this as a great opportunity to convert all the polaroid photos into the digital world, in a way that would be easy and convenient to share with the whole family. At first this project seemed to me endless because I decided I would look for all the good quality pictures of my grandfather, and just shot them with my cell phone. So I converted an album after album, for two weeks. Suddenly my visual memory of my grandfather sharpened again. It was a very nice project I took on to digitize old photos, improving the quality and making them sharable.
These days, Google Photos has some amazing tools for sharpening colors. Some photos I converted to digital ones even improved the image quality which made them look even better than the original ones. Thus old photos from my grandmother’s albums became a digital asset shared by all my uncles and cousins. Everyone was so excited to view the photos in an easy and convenient way. I am convinced that Grandpa Pesach (in Hebrew “pass-over”) would have been proud of this project.
What are the tools I took from this experience that are related to positive thinking?
At the end of the project, I received positive feedback from family members, about the blessed initiative. These complements did not pass me by (puns with my grandfather’s name). I let the sense of contentment stay with me for a while and so I allowed that feeling to seep into every cell in my body with a positive feeling. On top of that, even though my grandfather passed away about a decade ago, the inner feeling that I believe he would have been proud of me also flooded me with a wonderful feeling.
In fact, I’m talking here about a tool of stretching the good feelings. Humans often tend to let negative emotions settle in them for a very long time, incubating from within. After ending my nice little project, I actually subverted the positive emotions. That is, I let the positive emotions stay within me as much as I could. I allowed myself to enjoy feeling good for as long as possible, as much as I could.
With that said, here’s a documentary project I prepared for my undergraduate degree in communication, in which I filmed, directed and edited the story of my grandparents’ relationship. The story is in Hebrew, but you can watch it with YouTube’s subtitles feature: