My Life In Boxes

Well it was finally done, and there was an air of excitement and of completion as I looked at the stacks upon stacks of boxes and a mad jumble of miscellaneous junk that made up the sum total of my life.

It was like I was looking at a condensed version of all the years that had led up to this point, the representation of the journey through life so far, and as I gazed upon it one last time before shutting the door on that chapter of my life, I remember it felt sad.

Somehow packing the essence of all of your life history into boxes and stacking the odd parts of life that just don’t fit into a box unceremoniously in piles along the wall, I remember thinking of how it looked like some sort of museum exhibit, where you look at the glued together bones of some ancient creature that in life must have had a powerful presence  and energy. One that demanded of anyone who stood in their presence, “behold, this is me! This is my life…”

Now even though you can look at the plaque on the museum wall and try to imagine the living essence of what it must have been, you can kind a detached picture of the creature, but of course it’s not the same, once the powerful essence of something is stripped down into a mere representation of what it had been, you can no longer feel the life there.

That’s how it felt looking at those boxes.

It occurred to me that its actually easy to close the door on a chapter of your life if you have a bright exciting future that you are living into.

The hard part is that you miss it almost immediately, as you feel the pull of friends and memories that had filled your life there.

Then with an air of finality I shut the door on the storage area, closing the Georgia chapter of my life that had lasted several happy years.

What is about life that makes change so difficult?

The allure of the fresh new future and of people and places yet to be experienced is what pulls us to it like a magnet, but the difficulty is that we get comfortable, we get attached to people and places, to spending time with good friends and the familiar surroundings and trappings of our life. There is a certain comfort to it that can’t be denied.

For me is seems that I revel in the change, in the act of moving forward, and embracing the unknown future. It’s exciting, its new, its fresh and alive and filled with the promise of tomorrow.

But at some point in time, there’s a price to pay. Then it’s like the old saying “absence makes the heart grow fonder” and all of a sudden I realize how much I miss it.

Then I think “damm”!

Why did I leave such an awesome life?

Pondering that thought, I guess I can understand why so many people never leave where they grew up or settled because after a few years you become attached, and the many strings of those attachments connect directly to your heart, and leaving them is painful.

If you pull on any of those strings, the feeling starts slow like the barest trickle of water but then the trickle becomes a river and then a flood that can overwhelm you if you let it

My Crazy Trailer Park Pool

I do miss my beautiful house in the country, the trees, the crazy trailer park above ground pool, having neighbors that were far enough away that you had to drive to visit them.

I miss having coffee with Julie in the morning on the front porch and staring out across the green and the trees and the forest. Of hearing the wild turkeys in the morning and the soft wind in the trees at sunset.

Ah! The awesome mornings of quiet

Well heck, life moves on I reasoned, maybe my nostalgic reverie is just the natural result of living for several months in a 32 foot RV that has me missing the 3000 square foot house.

But maybe not! Maybe it’s just the attachment that occurs over time with every chapter of our lives, it happened when I left my childhood home in Miami and moved to Colorado, it happened when my children finally moved into their bright shining future and went to college, it all made me sad after a while. I guess it’s the whole concept of having to give up something to get something new.

Well, it sucks!

I want a world where we can have both, the best of all worlds!

I’ll let you know when I find that world….

About Marc Barrett

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