This weekend I moved into a new home. The prospect of moving had me all excited until I had to pack up and pack out - literally my whole life, within two days.
Packing everything in boxes and having to discard anything proved very difficult. How do you decide what's more important? What goes into the bin first, my first article or my first home economics apron? My first doll or my first bag? I have so many memories of my childhood, and I cannot discard a single thing by either donating it or passing it on. Does that make me selfish?
I am not holding on to the doll because it's a doll, I'm actually holding on to the memory of the doll. When I look at it I remember holding it at night and feeling safe, and the way I felt when I first got it. That excitement alone is priceless, so why discard of it? My mother and sister obviously don't share my sentiments but, to be honest, all of us have a little box of memories stashed away somewhere.
Take my mom for instance. Drilling me to get rid of my books and unnecessary clutter, I found she herself has a box with worn-out baby shoes and stained little bibs. That is her life in a little box.
But how do I put my life, at this age, in a little box? What do you keep and what do you dump? She has had at least 20-odd more years of experience than I have. She has been through the phase of chucking out this and that. I, on the other hand, prefer to be surrounded by my things.
It reminds me that I am where I need to be right now, and that it is okay to carry things with you throughout your life. And one day I just might need something and then it's not there. Call me silly - but what happens if someday, God forbid, I lose my memory? What will I have to show for my life?
Stories told second hand are just not the same. I dream of writing a novel some day, I know I won't be able to squeeze my doll and apron into book form. But sometimes one forgets the little things that matter. Slowly, with time as we age, we omit certain things from our lives which at the time used to be the most important and happening thing.
I don't want that to happen to me.
I am quite content carrying my baggage with me wherever I go because it's a part of who I am, how I got here and where I am about to go. It's the memories that we have that keep us going and make us live for creating new ones. If at this stage it means piling it into a box, so as to not forget, let it be.