How Finding Old Family Photos Helped Me Reconnect with my Dad
This is a photograph of my father Cees Moerman as a teenager in the late 1950’s. He was born in Amsterdam on 20 March 1946 and sadly passed away in Luxembourg in November 2008.
My father and I had a troubled relationship. He was an alcoholic, and his drinking was eventually the cause of his death. I broke off contact with him when I was in my 20’s and was not with him when he died.
In 2014, I set out to learn what had happened to him, and to find where he was laid to rest. This personal journey is recorded in my first film, a short documentary called The Third Dad, which also uses a number of photos from his life before I was born, as well as an unpublished book of poetry he wrote at the age of 19. The film premiered at the Edinburgh International Film Festival in 2015 and went on to win a BAFTA Scotland New Talent Award. It is still playing at film festivals worldwide.
Making the film allowed me to reconnect with my Dutch family, who I hadn’t seen for about 30 years. In their photo albums, I found several photos of my dad from when he was young. Photographs I had never seen before. This is one of them. I’m so relieved to find these old family photos; memories still exist. By looking at them and engaging with them, I feel I can finally get to know my father a bit better, reconnect with him and see myself in him. ~shared by @qriosities & @thethirddad