Facing the past.
February 27, 2013 § 2 Comments
This weekend was spent purging.
For an entire Saturday, I attacked the many bins lining my parent’s garage that held my childhood. No easy task.
The sheer amount of EVERYTHING was daunting, all that I kept from elementary school on. I found myself shaking my fist at Young Natalie for thinking every little thing was imperative to keep and leaving it to Present Preggers Natalie to toss.
I did end up being pretty cutthroat and I was quite proud of myself for filling recycle bins and trash cans without mercy. Of course, this only sent me into a spiral of grief after all was said and done. Like, weeping-and-gnashing-of-teeth style. But that was kinda to be expected.
My Hi-Yu Jr. Court Queen dress, which saw many parades in the 4th grade. Ruffles and roses. Tiara and sash not pictured.
Also, my husband wearing my grandfather’s shirt, my jean jacket from “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” in 6th grade, and a jacket from when I volunteered at Children’s Hospital in high school. High School Graduation Card Reading Time with Kenny…before they met the recycle bin.The Joey Lawrence poster that hung in my room 4-EVA. ‘Nuff said.
I wish I would have captured more gems, but that really is just a testament to how “in the zone” I was. You’ll just have to live without seeing the middle school art projects and every single homework assignment I’ve ever done.
But I learned from this experience, going through everything from 3rd grade reading awards to high school corsages and every birthday card I’ve ever received.
I’ve done a lot of stuff. Looking back on it all and remembering things that haven’t been brought to mind in years, I appreciated the life I’ve lived so far. Sports, choirs, committees, honor rolls, and the writing–oh, the writing. I was a neat little person.
A lot of people have invested in me. As my mom stood by and my dad’s commentary ran through my head, as I read notes and letters from those I love, I was so grateful for the people in my life who have not only financed, but been proud of my accomplishments. Quite an awesome group of family and friends was always cheering me on, always encouraging me to try new things. And boy, did I.
A rich life is not captured by things alone. It was hard to relinquish tub after tub of memorabilia. I have often been referred to as the family historian– it’s in my nature to hold on, to remember. How am I supposed to remember if everything is in a landfill or Goodwill? I will. I know I will.
I gave due time to looking back and now it’s time to look forward. I have to admit that I was torn in this process. I have been spending most of my days looking toward the future and there I was, being thrown back to the past. But I can truly say that I loved walking down memory lane, I spent due time with everything, and look forward to having more room for what the coming days will bring.
It’s a new phase of life, friends, and soon our bins will be full of someone else’s watercolor paintings, awards, and all-important thoughts. Their little hands and feet will make their mark on the world and we will want to line our garage with those memories.
And I’m more than okay with that.