So I’m packing up my room, getting ready to start the next phase of life, when I come across some stuff. I’ve lived in the same bedroom for some years so stuff really started to accumulate. I found my id card from fifth grade and ones from every year of high school. One year I was wearing my “I just realized I don’t care” shirt which was very fitting because I looked like I did not care one bit about some school picture.
Finding all this stuff – old movie tickets, photos, books, notes, and random mementos my friends had left me over the years – I realized how important it is to start and end things right.
I stumbled across one piece of memorabilia that a friend had given me some years earlier and I thought of throwing it away. I don’t usually throw this kind of stuff away but if it’s kind of old or I’m still friends with the person, I’m more likely to get rid of it. Still, for whatever reason, I couldn’t bring myself to throw it out. I think in that moment I solidified what I had already known. Just because my life is changing/happening, doesn’t mean I should just let go of some old things without even a second thought. That doesn’t mean I should hold onto them either – and I don’t plan on doing so – but there’s a good, healthy, and right way to let them go.
The thing is, those mementos represent people. But people aren’t objects. You shouldn’t just throw them away when you no longer find them useful. Every person I’ve called a friend has helped shape me into the person I am now. Every single one. I think those same people deserve all the respect I can give them. I don’t want to remember awkward goodbyes or unspoken words. I want any separation that I’m going to create to be a respectful and loving one. Not because I don’t want to be hated but because I don’t want to be unloving.
Anyway, I’m excited to see old friends in the next few weeks. I’m excited to start some things and I’m equally excited to end some things. I feel like I’m right on the cusp of something awesome and I realize that I can’t take everything from the last 22 years of my life with me into the next stage of life. But I’m always glad for what I learned.