Guest Post: Guardian of a Lifetime of Memories
Guest post by Amy. Human Being. Mother of Two. Deep Thinker. Granddaughter of a Philosopher.
Alas, I take you so much for granted. I trust in your ever-expanding depths, the opportunity to stash one more cord, one more box of Kleenex, or one more bag of clothes. You bear it all in silence, dignity, and with security. The masterly way you conceal out-of-season items inspires me. You never complain about my morning or evening pilgrimage to rifle through your wares in hope for a better tomorrow. It makes no difference to you whether a vacuum cleaner, dusty ceiling fan, unwrapped Christmas presents, assorted outgrown baby socks, or antique school papers find their way inside you. You rarely fuss when speakers get wedged inside any which way (which happens to the best of your kind, I am afraid).
The first time we met, I opened the door to peer inside your forlorn, empty interior. With my critical eye, I examined your dimensions. I almost declared you too small on the spot, not worthy of a second look. I did not pronounce that final judgment because I was not looking for myself, but for my children. I saw that you were a most worthy guardian of their treasures. I had a comforting vision of toy-filled baskets on the floor underneath a flurry of pastel, girly fabrics neatly lined up and suspended in space above the baskets. You made that vision a form of reality, by cherishing the horrid almost-glow-in-the-dark-pink dresses favored by my daughter. You bore the mud-encrusted mismatched shoes sprawled every which way in your recesses gracefully. I still grin at the memory of our new cat seeking refuge inside you. He cocooned himself in the dark recesses of a corner to get away from the noise and chaos that is my family. There are days (weeks, months) when I want to cocoon myself in your sanctuary also.
In time, I replaced my daughter’s shockingly vivid dresses, shoes, discarded papers and old candy wrappers with items of my own. I mourned for your ill treatment at her hand and resolved to treat you better. I restored you to your former glory by wiping out dust and cobwebs, paint flakes and unidentified stuff that littered your surfaces. At least twice a year since then, we meet to commune for several hours at a stretch with the lofty goal of redefining and refining my life. You are there with me reviewing lots of memories while I clear out all the items and look at them in the light of day. Some items are restored to your depths, being declared worthy of your sacred care, while others are rejected as trash or resigned to other spaces. I consign countless items to the garage to free you from undue stress. My intense respect has grown from admiration and appreciation into a need to have you at your best. We work together to catalog and improve civilization as we know it.
Just recently, it was time for the annual pilgrimage, and I came to an understanding that I had never had before. You truly are enough – you are more than enough for me. I had never realized that the space that is there is truly sufficient for me and my life. I look forward to continuing to work together in tandem to restore order to my life through corralling all objects stored within you. I boast about completing the most recent restoration process to my friends and family.
As a token of my affection, I resolve to guard you better from the callous members of my family who would willy-nilly stash their stuff within you because it is “convenient” or because they can. I will continue to improve the quality of the items you hold, and find less painful ways to contain assorted objects. I will place items inside you carefully and properly, instead of blindly shoving something in and praying that it doesn’t avalanche out on top of me. I look forward to the day when I can evict my husband’s extensive cord collection from your domain. I am hopeful that there will be a day when everything that resides within you is strictly mine, instead of just held in trust by me. How I love you, my closet…