I had a conversation today with a woman who’s niece just lost everything in a house fire. The whole house burned to the ground. Pictures. Momentos. All their furniture. But everyone got out alive. They have insurance so the house will be rebuilt and its contents replaced. The pictures, well I am sure that someone somewhere probably has wedding photos, etc. Momentos are probably gone.
This got me thinking though about how much importance we place on stuff.
I have all my photo albums. I have a box full of school stuff mom kept for me. And I realize that it is all going to end up in a garbage heap somewhere or burned before I die. T is not going to want them. He knows no one in the photos save for myself, the bro and mom. There is no connection. The stories behind them will mean nothing.
The school items are useless as well. Again they only have importance to me and even that is fast going the way of the dodo bird. I have carted that box around through three moves. And I think in 18 years since receiving it, I have looked in there once.
If my apartment were to catch on fire, my concern would be getting T and the cats out. And myself of course. Everything else I can replace. The photos cannot be replaced but how often have I looked in those photo albums since receiving them 18 years ago? Once with T who quickly became bored. I have memories, and to me that is so much more important.
How for my 5th birthday, mom put me on the bus (this was 1977 things likes this were relatively safe to do) and I sat in the front seat where the bus driver could keep an eye on me. When I arrived at the stop in front of City Hall I got off and met up with my grandma who took me to The Old Spaghetti Factory for lunch.
How every Sunday after we visited at grandma and grandpa’s I was sent home with a chocolate marble ice cream cone. To this day that is my favorite ice cream.
I remember when my brother was born. I did cartwheels across the front lawn. That excitement quickly turned to dismay once I realized I was stuck with him forever. (He he he he the bro never reads my posts so I can make fun as much as I want)
How T cried when he was born and gripped my finger so tight for such a tiny little thing. And I said ‘Welcome to the world baby.’
That is what is important. Not the material things that people surround themselves with because more is better, but the time that I have spent with my family and friends building memories. Memories can never be lost not even in senility or Alzheimer’s as there is a retreat into the past.
And that is what is irreplaceable. Memories.