Lately I’ve been thinking about how things can be tied up in sentimentality. How our possessions are not just things, but are also the stories tied up in them, and the meaning that is associated with them.
I frequently do purges and get rid of large quantities of things, and encourage other people to do the same because having too many things is more stressful than it’s worth. Because of this, I have been accused by my mother more than once of having no sense of sentimentality, particularly when I’m trying to help her purge. The problem there is I don’t always know the story behind her things, so I inadvertently try to get her to get rid of things she really loves on occasion.
Here’s a cute story about purging: Mom was once trying to get my nephew to purge his toys. He has too many, and a lot that he has outgrown. He didn’t understand that she only wanted him to get rid of the ones he didn’t want, and when I was at his house he told me, “Grandma’s crazy. She wants me to get rid of all my toys!” and I told him she didn’t want to make him get rid of the ones he liked, just the ones he didn’t play with anymore. So we went to his room to go through his things, and when he realized he had a lot that he didn’t play with anymore, he was a very big help. He would even think through what he wanted in a very smart, adult way, like “you can get rid of the hot wheels with the plastic bottoms, but keep the ones with the metal bottoms because they’re better.”
So in defense of myself as having a sense of sentimentality, this week I will share with you some of my favorite things. The ones that won’t be going out with the purging because they mean too much to me.
This water cup is something awesome I keep on my bedside table. The Artist gave this to me for Christmas last year, after I had seen something similar in a store. This one is handmade and matches our blue-green bedroom decor perfectly.
The best thing about this is that you can keep water on your nightstand, and it is pretty, and when you want water, you just pour it into the lid, which is also a cup. This way I always have water on hand and don’t have to get up in the middle of the night to get it.
This is a decanter that my sister gave me for Christmas the year before last. We were wandering around an antique shop in the Hudson Valley, and I kept seeing pretty decanters and wanting them. As you may be able to tell, I like pretty glass containers. So she found this for me and gave it to me for Christmas months later. It was one of those gifts that you forgot you wanted, and were so happy that someone else remembered for you.
This one, I’m not sure I can exactly say is MINE, as it technically belongs to the Architect. Recently, he was wandering around an abandoned warehouse and came home with this. It’s just SO perfect. I love it.
This was a gift from my parents. It is a necklace of the Mayan goddess Ixchel. I have been extremely interested in the Maya since I was in high school, even almost majoring in them in college. I’ve studied at many of the Maya sites and know quite a bit about Maya history. Ixchel is my favorite entity from Maya mythology as I feel she wraps up many of my major interests. 1) she is Maya 2) She’s the goddess of textiles, which I also love and 3) She’s a fertility goddess, and I used to want to be a midwife and am very interested in reproductive rights.
This is my absolute, hands down favorite possession. The Artist and I met the summer before my senior year of high school and had a summer fling. One of our running jokes at the time was that he wanted me to write him a 10 page essay about why I liked him. So at the end of the summer, I wrote him a letter (not 10 pages, probably 3?) about why I liked him and what he meant for me. Unfortunately for our summer fling plans, but fortunately for our lives, we had fallen in love. So at the end of the summer we broke up, both heartbroken, but believing it was for the best because I was going back to college far away. It didn’t work out, and I came back for him during fall break. A few months later, he gave me this book, which he said was like his 10 page essay to me. It’s a lot longer than 10 pages, but so heartfelt. It follows how he felt as we met and fell in love, then his heartbreak when we were broken up, then how happy he was when we got back together. For some reason, it surprised him that I loved it so much. I still read it whenever I’m feeling sad because there’s nothing like a book about how much your boyfriend loves you to make a girl feel better.
What are your favorite things?