My husband was cleaning out the garage over this past weekend when he came across some boxes of my high school and college keepsakes. I was working in the house when he hollered for me to come out to the garage because he found something I may want to look at. Over the past year we have had a few interesting things appear in our garage so I wasn’t too keen on the idea of finding out what the latest addition may be. Reluctantly I followed his voice and found him peering down into a familiar looking plastic bin.
To call me a pack rat would be an understatement. From sixth grade on I faithfully kept a “memory box”. There was not one important detail that did not get tucked away safely into my box because at the time I was certain it would be a detrimental part of my young life. I did not want to forget anything and I assumed that by filing away every life moment into old shoe boxes they would be forever memorialized.
Memories came rushing back as I pulled out tiny bits of my past. Old prom tickets, empty cologne bottles, ticket stubs, dried up flower petals, the list is endless. To anyone else my memories that filled that box would be nothing more than a pile of junk. But to me each remnant, each dead flower held huge significance in the foundation of my life.
My sixth grade May Dance flashed back to me in a blur of horrid banana clip fashions and hoop skirts. My first basketball game, where I was more nervous than I had ever been in my life played again before me in vivid detail. I could almost feel my cheeks burning in embarrassment just as they did on that night when through my inexperience I shot the ball at the wrong goal.
Bits and pieces of stuff added up to all the monumental occurrences significant to my life…the world of me. No one else in the universe can say that their life has been just like mine because everyone is unique. Like I said before, my box of memories would be just a pile of garage to someone else, but to me they are my history, the building blocks to the life I live today.
Carrying over my keepsake habits into marriage and motherhood I have faithfully kept memory books and boxes for all special occasions and milestones. I hope that one day my boys will be able to look back through those old boxes and be able to see glimpses of how life was when they were babies. I hope they are able to feel the love that their father and mother had for them and one another through the good times and the bad. Maybe, just maybe, by glimpsing my life in a box they will be inspired to begin a treasure chest of their own.
I suppose it is human nature to wonder what might have been had we chosen to live our lives differently. Looking over those tidbits of my past I smiled at their significance, swallowed the lump of sentimental mush in my throat, and carefully placed the lid back on. I walked away knowing that I would not change one thing about my life, the life God has blessed me with, because I can say with a full heart that I am where He wants me to be.
God bless you and may you have a safe and happy week. “Happy are the people whose God is the Lord!” Psalm 144:15