Why I Scrap

Why I Scrap by Katie the Scrapbook Lady (originally published in October of 2005)

Many of you know that my son has autism. There is a lot of history there that I won’t go into, but back when he was first diagnosed at age 3, we were given a pretty bleak prognosis. We have certainly had our ups and downs over the years but he has grown into the most amazing person and has flourished in ways we never would have imagined!

When first started scrapbooking, it was mostly for me. It was a creative outlet. Soon I discovered what a good learning tool it was for my son. I was very devoted to staying caught up on his pages until about 3 years ago. We went through some really hard stuff with our local school district and I even ended up homeschooling for awhile. Honestly, life was so tough during that time for various reasons that I simply couldn’t scrap. Then with moving to a new house and just life in general I lost my devotion to keeping the scrapbooks up to date. (this was before I discovered digital!)

Well, I have been enjoying the creative process again and working on lots of pages about various topics. I have even gone back in time and have created some beautiful baby pages for him which has been fun since all I had back then was a rudimentary scrapbooking skills and a handful of stickers! 

The other night my son saw me at working away at the computer and he said to me in all sincerity “Mom, did we lose a scrapbook?” Of course I felt immediate panic…lose a scrapbook? Heaven forbid! When I asked him what I meant he said “I can’t find my current scrapbook.” I went in and showed him where it was on his bookshelf. He then said to me “I mean the one that is supposed to come after that.” It hit me hard. There is no scrapbook after that. His life in albums stopped 3 years ago and resides in boxes that should be labeled “good intentions.”

How could I have gotten so far away from my own beliefs? I used to teach people how to scrapbook for crying out loud and if there was a mantra I repeated more than anything else, it was “get those pages done!” Don’t worry if they are perfect, get them in albums with journaling because that is what matters. So this is confession time I suppose. Even “Katie the Scrapbook Lady” loses sight of the big picture at times. But it made me re-think this whole wonderful hobby. I had to ask myself WHO AM I DOING THIS FOR? It really isn’t about getting published, or even receiving praise from an online gallery. It is about the subject himself, the one that I love. Bottom line is I do this for my family. I want them to know I love them more than anything, more than I can even fathom. I know that scrapbookers everywhere feel this and know it also… but do they remember it? Remember my son’s innocent desire to see his life experiences in full color. Re-commit yourself to scrapbook what is truly important. Remember why you scrap… Just some food for thought and hopefully some inspiration.

(Layout credits here)