09 March, 2009

sorting through hope.

I finally went through all my boxes! Three moves across the United States have whittled my earthly possessions from what they once were to merely a few boxes, but you know what? Having only a few boxes and knowing exactly what is in each of them is much more satisfying than having a bunch of "stuff" sitting in unlabeled boxes which you kinda remember the gist of what is in them.
My best friend helped me label and sort many of my boxes after i was able to empty a few of them onto a bookshelf that i purchased for myself this past week.
I got rid of ALL my cardboard boxes and two of my plastic tubs. I literally narrowed it down from about 20 tattered cardboard boxes (some of which have been in use since 1989, no joke) to about 10.
I cut down, resorted, and slimmed my junk by 50%! Do you realize how strangely liberating that is?
Liberating and a little depressing (only a little) that i can fit my entire life into ten plastic tubs and a bookshelf.
I always loved seeing my parents' old childhood things. I marveled at their teenage diaries, old love letters, clothes, art, music, knick-knacks... and was almost always sad that there wasn't MORE to see!!
i never understood why they didn't keep more of it! So as a kid, teen, and young adult- i set aside many things for my kids to see. Old toys, books, clothes, art...
i had quite a few boxes of "things" that i couldn't wait to show my kiddos.

Well... as i got older and started to move things on my own, i found less of the things i thought were important a long time ago worth another move. Worth the cost of another trip, another postage fee, or another plea to a friend to keep for a few months/weeks/years.
I still have some things- mostly books and clothes (which i know will not be very interesting to my children)... and i have an entire box of barbies and doll clothes. We all know that if i have only boys, that box will have been saved strictly for my own enjoyment years down the road lol!

It's funny what things end up moving from place to place. My hope chest comes to mind...
This is one of my four pieces of furniture (chest, dresser, side table, new bookshelf) and the ONLY one that has made it through every single move.
It belonged to my grandmother. Her parents bought it for her when she was married. My grandmother gave it to my mother when she was married. My mother passed it down to me when i moved out of the house with my (now ex)husband on my arm...
this weekend i cleaned it out. It has carried things from my past in it since after the divorce.
I re-purposed it to hold my linens, including blankets made for my future children by my mother. It's nice to be able to open it often now. Previously, i only opened it once every few months.

It is made of cedar, and every time i open it, the smell of cedar comes rushing out of it and a wave of good memories wash over me. Memories of when i was small and "helped" my mother take china out of it to set the table with. Memories from teenage years and picking out things to go in it with my mom for my future life... I believe it will always be my favorite piece of furniture.


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