sentimentals

Jan 24, 2012

About a week ago, I got a random urge to re-organize our entire home. We moved here about eight months ago and although I unpacked and got settled in pretty fast, I kept a lot of things in the rush. Now that we've had a good amount of time to figure out what we use and what we don't, I was able to go through each room and either trash things, give them to goodwill, or organize them better. 

It actually went well and we now have a huge pile to donate and M has already taken about 5 garbage bags to the dump filled with...well, crap. We have two levels to our house, the downstairs that has two bedrooms, our living room, bathroom, and kitchen and the upstairs, a rather roomy loft that to date we've been using as an extra bedroom, storage, craft area, and "we don't know what else to do with this for now so let's stuff it upstairs" area. 


I'm an emotional being. I keep sentimental things and have a hard time letting go of them, somehow tying them so tightly to the memory or person that it feels like to get rid of it would be letting go of the memory or person. I think it was particularly hard because I'm missing my family back home and have been struggling to find myself in this new place. I'm working through this issue. I had done the entire house, and had organized an entire category for the loft. We got a shelf, some labels, some storage boxes, and I went to town. When it came time to actually organize the upstairs itself, I hit a weepy brick wall when I sat down to go through my desk drawers.


I believe I had Carrie Underwood radio on Pandora playing on my Ipad and just about the time some song came on about leaving home, I came my drawer of cards and letters. I knew they were there. I have been keeping every single letter or card ever given me for any and every holiday or special occasion, or just because. Inside were letters from old friends, cards from my grandparents, heartfelt letters from my mom and grandpa, a letter sent to me from my sister when she was little and at summer camp. A group of letters from loved ones I was surprised with in Jamaica on my birthday last year. 

At first, I was going to throw them away in an attempt to stick to my plan of cleaning out the clutter. I'll admit that I shed a tear or twenty when I threw them in the bag. We talked through it a bit and after I had settled down some, I decided that if I can make piles and piles of junk to throw out or things to donate, that I felt okay keeping a shoe box size pile of things that mean a lot to me. Included in some of the sentimentals I found in other places was a leather stamped bracelet I made at the summer camp I attended for years. It reminds me of some of my favorite memories of counselors,cabin mates, and a naivety that is long gone.  I also found things like a bottle cap of M's that I had kept when we were teenagers but weren't dating yet and a copy of my piano jury notes from all the intimidating professors during my freshman year. I decided to keep these, too, imagining myself opening the box back up in a year, five years, ten years and being reminded of those times in my life. I look forward to the memories and sentimentals that the next 10, 20, 50 years will bring.

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