Sunday, November 23, 2008

A Dead Man's Treasures

As I walked the aisles, I cannot help but go back in my mind to those times when my heart was broken, my vision clouded by tears and my mind unable to process nary a thing going on around me. Yet, I was expected to make decisions...important ones, crucial ones. I did...some of them were good, some not so much. But who the hell can hold you responsible during times like that?

I pick up objects and wonder, "who did this belong to? How did it make its way here? For I am in an antique store where the life of those who have passed gather to tell stories through the objects they have left behind " One such thing...trophies, NRA rifle and pistol matches from the 50's and 60's. Who did they belong to and why are they there? Does the family of the owner not feel proud enough to continue to display the achievement of their loved one anymore?

More than the things...the photos....the old sepia toned photos of the young and old alike. I am struck by piles and piles of them. Images lost, people lost...unknown to the strangers who walk these passageways of the past. I look at these faces and my heart cries out, "you had a life, a story, a tale that should be told to the generations that come after you.

But I shouldn't be so judgemental. For I too have found myself sitting among the belongings of a loved one. In fact, I have found myself sitting among the belongings of all of my loved ones in years past. It is a hideous event that words cannot describe.

Things surround you...and they are things...wood, glass, metal and much of it means nothing for you have just endured something that you cannot believe is possible. You know something has to be done with these things, yet sense and reason and practicality are not in your vocabulary let alone you mind.

So you do what think is best and hope you make sound decisions. You keep what is important to you. You keep the things that have family history. And you know what...you will always have regrets. There will be that one thing you let go because your mind just can't comprehend it all.

It is impossible to keep the entire lives of those we have loved and lost. We have to let some of it go. The decision then becomes to where. Of course, many can benefit from clothing and the like. Friends should always be thought of too. And the antique stores...well I guess that is always an option.

1 comment:

Sue Nicholson said...

You somehow seem to know what I felt like . . . I was fortunate as my brothers took control over some things and I the others.

But did I miss anything from the things they handled? And vice-versa. More importantly was I right not to share some of the more upsetting things?

You can only act at the time on the strength that you have, and what you felt was right then.

That lesson has been hard for me. As they say, hindsight is a wonderful thing. I would much prefer a saying along the lines of, "With what you knew at the time you made the right choices, accept this and move on".

Hugs Sue

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