Storage Solutions

I am a very organized person. I keep things categorized and filed and stored properly. Great for me.
In my upstairs closet I have a large box. In it are stored those things that represent lost love. In no particular order those include:
a dog leash and collar, a baby blanket, some baby toys, a polka-dot sundress, an etched bottle, a racing T-shirt, and some little-kid hand-drawn pictures, among other things. I have learned that it is best not to open this box too often, as the sight of these things will bring me to my knees often. But this box is necessary because the pain is real, and cannot and should not be ignored. In fact, sometimes I open it just so that I can feel what it feels like to close it again.
Of course it is symbolic. While opening it makes me feel weak, closing it makes me feel strong after a bout of crying. Embracing pain and recognizing it for what it is, is part of life; any good therapist will tell you that. But life is also about experiencing new things knowing full well that they may, if not immediately, at least someday, cause hurt and pain.
For me these new things are represented as a big box tied with a bow. Maybe I open it with trepidation, but also anticipation, because there is always the chance that inside there might be breathtaking surprises and joy. It is worth the risk. People who genuinely embrace life know this.
Whenever I place something in the box in the closet, a little part of me dies.
Conversely, when I untie the bow and open a new  symbolic one, I feel a part of me is reborn. It is a cycle.
Learning how and when to open and close these boxes is maybe what we are supposed to learn in this life, but I haven't figured out how to control the boxes in my head, the memories, the dreams. It is a little harder to organize that mess, but I am trying, and that's all I can do.

Quintesse Quintesse
51-55, F
17 Responses Jan 6, 2011

Thank you for a moving story and well written too.All the memories good and bad remain in our mind and sometimes when least expected one will pop up and it feels like a stabbing pain.Of course something would have triggered that particular memory off and we must be prepared to meet the past again and be kind to ourselves when this happen as all is part of our life and what constitute our life and ultimately what has made us who we are.

Beware the boxes. Dealing with them is not easy.

All valid points. <br /><br />

Bear--Here! catch--a gift from me to you. Go ahead...<br />
Open it!<br />
Every day a new beginning, maybe.<br />
Here's to being reborn.

Absolutely brilliant! I love it!

I happen to believe that most if not all of what happens to us is random. How we deal with it is what makes us who we are.<br />
Letting go is the only way.<br />
Holding on is suicide.<br />
That's what I believe. <br />
(Also, being responsible and holding yourself accountable is okay--I mean you set standards for yourself, but you can in no way control other people. That is another lesson I am learning. Letting them off the hook is part of my recovery.)<br />
Again, holding on, expecting everything to make sense (the cataloging?) will slowly make you insane.

I think you HAVE to let go of the past without seeing any meaning in it. I particularly hate the phrase "everything happens for a reason" because it implies that I am supposed to take something away from every experience--even the ones I would just assume forget!? No way.<br />
Let go and move on.<br />
It's the only way. All that matters is right now.<br />
That's what I think anyway. (although obviously I have that box--I mean--it's not like you can just pretend the past never happened, and I guess it is okay to revisit it from time to time, as long as you do not let it define you. That is the key as far as I am concerned.)<br />
Dwelling on past experiences either leaves you delusional or bitter or both. Better to focus on right now--and most importantly--face your now with love. <br />
That's my take-away, my experience, and I am merely a student, a novice at this point--but I am working hard.<br />
Thank you for bringing me back to this story. I need to remind myself not only about the closing of old boxes--but of the opening of the new ones. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Fal, I'm beginning to think it is my job to chip away at your iciness, haha--I make you read the sappy stuff once in a while. <br />
I am not too brave with love, but I try. I have leapt a few times, adopting children, getting in and out of relationships, putting my heart out there. I think knowing the box is there just reminds me to cherish the moments I don't spend rifiling through it. And sometimes things turn around and I go months--years even!--without opening it, as I am too busy with the new ones. <br />
I like what Venn said (I love you by the way for saying it) <br />
"Here's to all of our boxes." <br />
I love that. We celebrate as friends, the sadness and the joy. <br />
<br />
And I like too what Charmerende said, this whole box closing and opening makes me face myself, my past pain, even knowing that there will always be more pain--that's why I said sometimes I open it just to feel what it feels like to close it again. A form of immunology maybe, so you can steel yourself for the next time.<br />
It has made me who I am. I like that too. <br />
Okay--box opening time. It's a beautiful day and I'm heading out there.<br />
Thanks everyone. I loved seeing this this morning. It has inspired me to seize the day.

love is for the brave.<br />
<br />
I have a box of old letters and cards that I keep. Every few years I'll open it and see what I was like back then. Sometimes there's tears, but not always. <br />
<br />
Here's to all of our boxes.

Damn.. never noticed this post before the recent comments brought it to my attention..<br />
Have to say, this is excellently written, and straight from the heart. I love it. Can't write anything cynical about it, even if I tried.<br />
I have a box like that which exists both proverbially and in the real world. I haven't visited either for many years. The real one would be best to open again. Stuffed animals I loved for years, writings and pictures drawn while as a young one.. photos of us all being happy.. It's all out of my grasp, but I could get it if I wanted to. Probably too overwhelming to see again.<br />
Thanks again for sharing something like this. Chips away at my iciness a bit :P

I guess the box with the ribbon represents something new, something positive, something with potential.<br />
That's how I view it anyway.<br />
Thanks you guys.

I dont mean to keep the box necessarily, I mean being given a gift that may contain beathtaking surprise and joy

Thought provoking story Q<br />
<br />
I think we all love boxes with bows on :)

Oh b~<br />
It makes me cry every time I revisit it. I lost a baby, a marriage to someone who I thought loved me, my innocence. <br />
But I have grown also.<br />
Sometimes I go years without opening the box, because I am too busy opening new ones.<br />
I am in a opening phase right now, and loving every minute of it.<br />
I am reborn. Timely, it being Spring and all...<br />
Thank you, from my heart, for reading and commenting. It means so much to me.

well written, Miss Q

Thanks Chica. <br />
Cried a little writing this. Blew my nose. I'm better. <br />
Keeping the box shut for a while. <br />
Searching for bows.

Beautiful. Thanks for sharing! :)