DEAR ABBY: My mother's 80th birthday was last September. She asked me to bake her a pound cake. I decorated it like a giant sunflower, and it turned out beautifully. I took several pictures of the cake, then I got busy with the food and got only one bad picture of Mama. (She didn't like having her picture taken anyway.)
Abby, Mama died four months later, and now every time I look at those pictures I realize how unimportant the cake was. I should have made sure to get a good picture of Mama.
I have two pieces of advice: When someone wants to take your picture, don't run away or hide your face. Even if you are having a bad hair day or you've gained 20 pounds, you are still beautiful to the people who love you.
If you're behind the camera, make sure you take pictures of the important subjects. I can make another cake, but I can never take another picture of Mama. -- MISSED MY LAST CHANCE IN ROCKWELL, N.C.
DEAR MISSED: Don't be so hard on yourself. You will never know how many people will benefit from your experience because you took the time to write, admitting your regrets.