Saturday, January 5, 2013

Things are not important. I love things.

Things are not important. I love things....Let me try to explain what I mean by this.

I am not one to idolize things of monetary value. The more it costs, the less I want it (aside from a safe home and vehicle). I mean the things I collect such as vintage cookbooks, bake ware, etc.
I often refer to my "things" as treasures and the reason I do this is because yes, these are just things but they were once a homemakers things.

Maybe the woman who once owned it is no longer on earth, but I can still relate to her because I have her cookbook, or her mushroom canister set, or her Christmas record that she adored while sipping eggnog.
Maybe it belonged to my very own Grandmother or maybe it belonged to a complete stranger. Either way, she did exist and the item I have of hers, proves it.
She used these items with her own hands and this "thing" connects me to her in some way.
She is teaching me things while not even saying a word.

I also treasure my "things" because they were gifts from loved ones.
They know how disconnected I sometimes feel to the world of today and how much I relate to the past.
But I bet if I were alive back then, I would feel the same disconnect. I don't want to live in the past, I've expressed this  in other conversations. But, I do need to feel connected to the past because it has  much to teach me.
My favorite memory of the past is that of homemakers. Women, wives, mothers, activists.

When I feel overwhelmed by the world of today, I look to the past because those times were much harder than now.
Suppression, oppression, judgement, abuse, ignorance, violence were all rampant. Yet women of yesterday persevered.
They were not perfect, they may not have always been happy in their situation, but they kept going.

They are my teachers. They have taught me more than any school teacher ever has. So when I am blessed with a "new" vintage cookbook or household item from the past, I am learning yet one more thing.

 I will never go backward but I will always look backward to learn what to bring forward.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this post - it resonates with me so much. I try to stay unattached to material things, and yet I feel that it's good to enjoy/appreciate things at the same time. It's interesting because, for the most part, our generation has had to move around/relocate a lot - both during childhood and in adulthood. This means that we have had to leave a lot of our toys and things behind. It is always so cool to walk into a Goodwill or Salvation Army store and find something from the early years of my life that I had to part with (like a Little Golden book I used to read). If I decide to buy it, then I love knowing that I have something that belonged to another person in my own generation - a person who probably knew a lot of the same struggles and joys as I have. If I don't buy it, it is just cool to see these things sitting on the shelves (like an early 80s mini tea party set or a School House Rock record) because it reminds me that we have never been alone - that we have all experienced the same things in life together - even the Saturday morning cartoons we watched. The way we can sometimes feel the presence of the person who previously owned something is so fascinating - I wonder why that is, and I know exactly what you're talking about - I have noticed and sensed that, too. Looking backward is a good thing when it brings us forward - and that is a profound concept. It's so interesting how these things - these pieces of the past - can connect us with both our own generation, and other generations as well.

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