Village of Carlisle

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“If I had to live my life overI would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage.”Erma Bombeck

“I think I’m going to wear the diamond earrings your dad gave me, even though it’s not a special occasion.”

This was a comment from my mom yesterday.  
“I also think I’ll wear the wedding band I had re-designed, even though it’s not a special day or anything.”

She was speaking to the wrong person.  I jumped ship on the “waiting for a special time game” a long time ago. I am the person that wears my fake fur with my jeans, my 1940’s fedora with a dress and burns all the candles in my house on a daily basis.  So I really thought I belonged to the “every day is special” club.  But, I was wrong.

Having just moved, I found out that I have a box of things that I obviously had been storing for a long time.  I thought I’d found all of them in the last move, six years ago.  Nope – this box was a treasure trove of outdated stuff thatapparently I’d set aside for the right time, or the correct special occasion.  The box had been carried to our attic, and had just been sitting there – no urgency to open it.  It was marked “Karen – mementos and stuff”.  Wow, that explains all the contents inside, doesn’t it? It’s no wonder it had been carried from move to move, never opened.

My curiosity finally got the best of me and I sat on the attic floor with the box between my legs. I blew the dust off the top and slowly pulled the yellow tape off the top.  I was greeted by a shoe.  One, tiny, white baby shoe.  It too, had faded with time – since it was now almost 30 years old.  It was scuffed and worn, a testament of the busy and happy life of the little boy that wore it.  Peering through my tears, I reached down again inside this time capsule. This time I was greeted with a book.  The corners were frayed and worn, and when I opened it I saw the handwriting of yet another little boy – his name written in the awkward penmanship of a five-year-old.  Lost in my world now, I kept digging.  Photos here, cards and letters there. It was an emotional trip down memory lane.  Then I found it – there at the bottom of the box.  A ring.  A small, gold ring with either a ruby or a garnet on it. It was the ring presented to my mom on her 16th birthday.  I had set it aside so I could wear it on special occasions.  It’d been buried for all these years.  I put it on my finger and felt the closeness of mom.  I am the one that said I don’t need a vase to remember Grandma.  I am the one that is purging my life of all the “stuff” I have acquired through the years.  But I realized that maybe I’d hardened my heart a little too much – and tried to give away too much of me.  And that some memories are meant to be shared – or in this case worn.  

I’m sorry I judged you mom for not wearing your diamond earrings more often.  But just like your earrings, I now will wear your childhood ring with love and pride.   And when I look at it, it is my reminder that everyday really is special, and I will never save my treasures for a better time – because that time is right now.


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