This is my Memory Box, for lack of a more creative name. While I don’t believe in pack-rat-ism, or preserving everything from the past and clinging to it, I do think there is value in holding onto those special objects connected to important memories. More than anything, I like to just go through my box every month or so and smile at the people I’ve met, the places I’ve been, and the things I’ve done. It’s important to reflect on our lives every so often and see where we’ve come, to gain some perspective if nothing else.
I’ve made a photo collection of some select things I have in my box, both to share a part of myself and to help you begin your own if you haven’t already. I want to do more sharing here, since this is my own personal blog and that’s partially the point. Here it goes! (I am working on my photography, but my abilities are no where near perfect). This is my bag of cards, using an old gift bag I received on a birthday. I’ve kept birthday, Christmas, and random cards I’ve received from special people in my life since about sixth grade. I can’t bring myself to throw out store-bought cards because I think so many are beautiful, and I can remember the thought behind them and the people who I’ve befriended over the years. These are the gifts I’ve received from the male species over the years, starting from the Pokemon cards in fifth grade. Yes, once upon a time, I was destined to be a world-class Pokemon trainer. I think there’s a lot of debate as to whether you should be allowed to keep gifts from past relationships. In my opinion, there’s no problem with keeping them. They are memories of times past, marking how I’ve grown in relationships and in my ability to give and receive love, and to me seeing the progression is very important. These are the more important, lengthy letters I’ve received, from best friends and people I’ve grown very close to. I plan on holding on to them as long as I can to preserve the memories with important people in my life. This is Costa Rican money on the top left (called colones) and Chinese money on the bottom right (called yuan). It’s the currency I’ve arrived back home with after the two trips I’ve taken out of the country. More than anything, I just find foreign currency so incredibly cool that I hold onto it. I think it’s a very interesting and easy piece of culture to bring home from anywhere, since each country has a currency to bring home. And finally, random things I’ve accumulated over the years: my first ever magazine, Psychology Today; a ribbon I won in my first and only horse show; the patch for Varsity Tennis at my school; a bronze pendant I made in seventh grade art before I moved; and a wooden coaster from a summer camp I used to attend. They aren’t the most important objects in the world, by any means, but for me they represent special and unique memories. Your box may look entirely different from mine of very similar. It depends on what things trigger special memories in your mind; maybe it’s postcards or seashells or ice cream spoons! It’s completely personal. Memory boxes, for me, are boxes to remind you of the past, where you’ve been, and how far you’ve come. I look in mine and see a few years of my life there, of happy times, or love, and of friendship. We don’t need to live in the past, but a blast of the past and our memories every once in a while can show us how much we’ve done in this life and how special it’s been. For me, those memories, the ones that give my life meaning, are worth holding on to in any form.