My Dad, God rest his soul, was a pack rat. My dad was famous for ordering things from those late night infomercials. When I'd arrive home from school, a new box would be waiting at the door step. I was allowed to bring it inside but I couldn't touch it. The boxes were rarely opened. They sat and collected dust. He collected so much junk and never used any of it.
I'm finding myself in a similar predicament. It's not so much buying things and not using them. I don't know what it's like to have money to throw away like that. My problem stems from holding onto and keeping things from my past. Items that most of friends from middle and high school have long since parted with. I feel inexplicably tied to these items. Lately I've felt like they have a death grip on me. The further away I get from my school years the more I don't understand why I'm keeping these things.
Will I ever use them again? No
Do I ever look through the boxes and bag and reminisce? Maybe once a year
Do I want to remember this time of my life? Sometimes
Here are some of the things I'm holding on to:
My friends and I were notorious for writing notes. In middle school we were obsessed with New Kids on the Block. We each had a favorite, Joe was mine. We would write notes to each other as if we were one of the guys, writing home to our "wife" while we were on the road. Some of these notes are hilarious. But why do I have a garbage bag full of them? Someone please help me throw these things away!
Behold my graduation cap. I have the gown too. Yes, I graduated high school.
I love books! I've probably read these books a hundred times. I used to dream of being a teenage Molly Ringwald, in love with my high school boyfriend and getting knocked up. Trust me, it was better than my reality at the time. This is one book turned into movie that I loved.
My dad traveled when I was younger. He would always come back from his trip with
I was the ultimate 90's hair band groupie. Before CD's there used to be these rectangular cassette tapes that played music. This photo is just a small sampling of my tape collection that I will never again listen too. Not shown are the endless Maxwell cassette tapes on which I recorded myself singing along to the radio. I don't even have a way to play these tapes. My ears bleed just thinking about the sound quality. So why keep them? What's the point? No, really I'm asking. Why?
I have baggage. Junk in my trunk. Literally and figuratively. I'm at a crossroads and I need one or two shoves in the right direction. Damn it, I'm a pack rat. I admit it. I have a sentimental attachment to all kinds of crap. I'm scared of what will happen if I throw this stuff away. Not in the universe will explode kind of way. It feels more like throwing the stuff away means it didn't matter.
I analyze myself all the time. Twenty years ago I was in a fire. Our house didn't completely burn down but we as a family lost a lot of possessions. Even back then I kept "stuff." I was able to save a few items from our damaged home. The majority of my childhood memories perished. My childhood blanket, and dolls and books just to name a few. My body physically recovered more or less from 2nd and 3rd degree burns. Mentally maybe I'm still that little girl. Scared to let go. Holding on to the fear that one day everything will just....go up in smoke...
What I do know is that my head feels ready to let go. I can't say the same for my heart.