Sunday, December 28, 2008

A Thought

I'm usually quite excited after Christmas. That period of time betwen Boxing Day and Hogmanay is when I give serious thought to the next year, goal setting and looking back over this year's goals and cleaning.

Cleaning and organizing is the worst. What I've found is that I'm the proverbial pack rat for getting, saving, and collecting things. Why is this? I don't have the excuse of my grandparents, who lived through the Depression, not do I have need because I have very little - in fact, I have an overabundance.

Oddly enough, the reason I keep most of things I keep is the same reason I dither about making decisions: afraid to commit (if I choose, truly choose, one path that means that other paths are not chosen), and afraid that if I get rid of something, I'll need it (which has occasionally - very occasionally! - happened).

A third reason, as I think about it, is the silliest of all: the power and emotional attachment that we invest in things. I was looking through papers last night and found some old Breton instruction from 19 years ago. I almost threw them away but then suddenly, as I went through some of the supporting paperwork, was overcome by a wave of nostalgia (from my Ireland trip) and a "what if?" thought: What if I need to do research for some writing? And back in the pile they went. How is it that things, which are not emotive nor emotional, can create such a reaction - most often nostalgia, that most thin and least useful of the emotions because it does nothing except create a desire for times past which cannot return?

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