On my day off yesterday, I meant to get rid of a bunch of stuff. The day went by and the intentions were still there, but I hadn’t taken action. Until a friend told me someone from a woman’s shelter was coming by to take some donations and did I want to get rid of anything? They especially wanted yarn and knitting needles.

When you don’t have a car, it’s hard to get rid of stuff sometimes. It’s that extra effort of getting the stuff to the donation box or the Good Will, that stops you. Or, at the very least, slows you down. But this took that problem out of the equation.

Well, I ran around my place like a crazy woman. Got rid of pantyhose (they need them for interviews), blank note cards, resume paper, gift bags, and yes, yarn and knitting needles. The needles were my grandma’s and were the old school type-metal! I had been hanging on to them for sentimental reasons. Knitting had been important to my grandma, or at least I remembered her doing a lot of it. Ergo, they had to be important to me too, right. Didn’t that make perfect sense?  Long story short, I kept a pair and donated the rest.

I’ve bought a wand scanner with the intention of scanning photos and putting them into a digital photo frame. If I’m going to live in a tiny house, I need to economize where I put things. A digital frame just makes sense. But, I do have a fear of losing the printed photo and then the technology changes, and eventually, I just can’t see the photos anymore. Irrational fear? Perhaps.

Last night, I went to the boxes below my bed and started pulling out the photo albums. I then remembered that’s where I have kept the photos from my wedding and my married life, as well as the years leading up to my marriage with my now-ex husband. When I left, he gave me all the items that we had taken or accrued together of sentimental value. Some thought that to be harsh of him. i realized it was his way of dealing with things, so I took them. At the time, I thought I deserved the guilt of having to relive those memories every time I looked at them. Now, the question is–do I keep the photos? Do I scan them into a separate disk so I still have them but they won’t inadvertently show up in the random display of photos I want to see regularly? Because that would be like a dull knife stabbing me every time, I think.

I watched the video of Dee Williams (embedded above) a few weeks ago and a few times since. In it, she mentions she was engaged to be married at one point in her life. She said she kept the wedding engagement announcement for decades. She finally realized she knew that happened and could let the written record of that happening, go. She knew she could hold it in her heart and inside of herself.

Similar to Dee, I know it (our relationship) happened. I know we had 12 years together. I know that parts of it were very good but it just wasn’t meant to last forever. If it had, I wouldn’t be who I am today. And when I look at them, it doesn’t make me feel that great. I feel a tinge of sadness. So, I think I am getting close to letting the photos go. It doesn’t mean the memories aren’t in me. They will always be there unless I get a mental illness that robs me of them (please please let that not happen!)

I keep thinking of what Dee says in the video–what would you want to hold in your arms as you die? I know that my answer to that question may change over time but I don’t think it would be photos of my wedding and subsequent marriage which ended a few years ago.

What memories do you have difficulty dealing with? Do you have photos like I do that you can’t get rid of or have had difficulty doing so in the past?

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