Saturday, August 12, 2006

Do you remember when...

As I've been packing up my residence of the last seven years (my parents basement), I've come across so many things that just make me stop and remember for a few minutes...Things I've held on to for a year or two, maybe longer, because they were so significant to me at the time.

I found some old artwork...paintings, drawings, sketches...some of which was not half-bad, most of which I will never show to anyone. I decided I would put these things where I put all things of this an old footlocker I've had for about ten years, where I store old journals, letters, and anything else of sentimental value that I can't really part with, but have no practical use for.

When I opened the footlocker to store away my artistic efforts, I could not help sifting through the contents.

The first thing I came across was a leather-bound journal from about three years ago. My words were words of despair and utter heartache over a broken relationship. This particular relationship was the longest relationship I've yet to have, and it spanned about two years. Thinking on it now, I am eternally grateful that it came to an end. Back then, though, I felt such an emptiness and loss, somehow not seeing how terrible the relationship really was, and the deep wounds it was leaving on my soul. It's funny how time changes our perspective.

I skimmed through a few other journals, and sadly found that I've not grown very much in how I perceive myself. In my old journals, some of which date back to when I was "just" a teenager, I perceived myself as being disgusting and unworthy of love. I still so very often feel like that today, at 31 years old. I guess there are some things that time itself does not change.

Among the more interesting discoveries in the footlocker was a half-smoked La Diva cigar. As I looked at this cigar, which I had put back in the glass tube it came in after I finished smoking it, I remembered so vividly the night my best friend and I sat on the boardwalk at Round Lake in Charlevoix, smoking our cigars in delicious rebellion against everything we were told we should be. It was late at least 10:00...and we truly believed we were stronger than we were told we could be. Those moments of smoking, burning haze were moments of incredible clarity...not because we were smoking, but because we were being something other than what we were told we had to be. As I looked at this cigar, I ached for those moments.

It occurs to me that the half-smoked cigar is only a few years away from being as old as I was when I smoked it. Time is relentless.

I am not sure why we chose cigars over cigarettes. I think we were in a phase where we wanted to be anything but the norm. Every rebellious teenager smokes cigarettes. We'd been there and done that. I am guessing we somehow thought cigars were less expected, therefore more rebellious, in a sophistocated way.

I continue to uncover treasures as I pack up my life here. Some of the things I'm finding bring back painful memories, and I am eradicating those items as quickly as I find them, not wanting to take that trigger with me when I go. I am ready for a fresh fresh a start as one can have when they cannot get away from themselves.

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