Saturday, May 2, 2009

The Things We Have

I can't help thinking more and more about the things we own and about sentimental attachements to them -- or not. Helen comment about the previous post here that perhaps we keep so many things because of fear. I think that is true for quite a few people. But I think it is sentiment for many as well, and the sense of familiarity. A rug I had for some 40 years was beautiful to me all that time, and I could not leave it behind in NYC, but here, a friend said it would be fine in his library and I was glad to give it to him because I felt it did not fit in my current situation -- which includes complete new carpeting throughout the apartment. Comes a time when sentiment fades like the pangs of a heartbreak. Letting go is not so hard. I think I gave away about 2000 books. I knew I was never going to read them again -- there are too many I want to read and new and more appear all the time and I truly do remember most of the ones I've read.

Perhaps this is a perception that comes with growing older, whatever fear was earlier no longer seems important in the same way the sentiment faded. In a forum of women who are partially my contemporaries some have mentioned moving to smaller homes or to RVs, and having to dispose of many possessions. They speak of a cleansing, a refreshing of perception. I think that is true. A lightness as one disposes of burdens of the past Less furniture to dust, fewer things to care for, tend to, look after. More time for the interior matters. Then too, energy is not as great so we want to use our energy in ways that are important to us. I actually have some bookshelves that hold only travel mementos! I treasure them. Perhaps when we are in an autumn of life we experience a different kind of spring when we unburden ourselves; it's not all dumping the dead leaves, it's a renewal as well. That's what this new move should be, another fresh start, a new garden to watch grow, different, of course, but change and growth. This is not the usual perception but it does not seen contradictory to me.

Thus the picture above, taken my last day in NYC when Rachel and I went to Riverside Park garden to eat our sandwiches beside the beautiful community garden that I've watch grow many dirferent years. And now, somewhat further north, I get to watch spring bursting out all over again -- the great patches of forsythia sunshine, the flowering trees, the patches of daffadils and narcissis. And this is only the beginning for every summer when I have visited I exclaimd over and over about the beauty of the flowers.

1 comment:

Anne said...

Sentimentality is definitely the driver for me! On my last move a couple of years ago I managed to cull quite a bit of stuff, but sentiment made me hang onto more than I would have liked. Sigh...

Hope your move is successful, I look forward to your postings from your new home.