Ha! I opened my first box and found love letters from my high school boyfriend. I don’t even remember saving them. We always argued, after all. I figured I had a bonfire in the back yard after we finally broke up. But, no; I even had the corsage from the Prom he took me to. Talk about petrified. I read a few and tossed them all. I’m not that girl, thank goodness, though she shaped me into who I am today.
I delved deeper into that box and found letters from my best friend from grade school, whose family had to move up north when her father got transferred. We were twelve when she moved. What a lifetime ago. I tossed them, too.
The letters from a college boyfriend I read. I always liked Gary. But he went away to college and got into the weed scene there. Pretty soon his letters became all about trying to stop smoking so much and living healthier. And then they stopped altogether. I hope he got his act together. He was a good guy.
I found bubblegum cards of “The Empire Strikes Back,” my favorite of the original Star Wars movies. My husband grabbed those, saying, “We need to see if these are worth something.” Maybe they are; but I imagine there are tons of them out there, since bubblegum was, and is, pretty popular. That’ll drive their worth down.
I found a diary of mine as well. Dreams of love, and marriage, as well as a teaching and a writing career dotted the pages, as well as a hopeful trip to England. To know that I have accomplished all those wishes pleases me, even though the England trip was a bust (my husband spent it in the hospital over there). I have found love and marriage, plus made a family. I did teach English to middle school children, and now I have my writing career. I’d say those goals were met.
This summer chore of cleaning out the garage has become so much more. It’s a trip down memory lane; of course, it is. But it is so much more. It’s a reawakening of those dreams and wishes; an acknowledgement of tears and disappointment, too. And through it all runs the vein of hope and promise, that anything can be accomplished if you set your mind to it. To paraphrase a credit card commercial, “What’s in your garage?” You won’t know unless you delve into it.
Have you found your past self in stored away boxes like I have? Tell me about your experience!