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  • When you're a kid, a teenager, even an adult, you know your mother just one way. You have an image of her as, well, your mother. You're not aware of her other lives. Like before kids and as a kid herself. So when you discover pictures of those other existences, it's a bit surprising. There she is, with your soldier Dad (and pre-you), wearing the most outrageously fabulous, huge hat and matching dress. Or smiling and sitting coyly on the grass, wearing your dad's army hat. And most shocking, the woman who refused to pet any dog you ever had is sitting on the lawn of her childhood home HOLDING a dog on her lap. Clearly no fear of "contact dermatitis," as she used to claim while avoiding eye contact with Colby, the attention-seeking border collie/German Shepherd mix.

    You could write a short story or three about those pictures, imagining what your "other mother" was like, back in the days before you. After all, a hat like that, there'd be a lot to tell.
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