I am. Hopelessly sentimental.
My much loved Grandmother has cleared out her home of the last 50ish years to move to a retirement village. Somewhere smaller. Somewhere safer to manoever as her body slows further down.
It’s all a bit of a wrench, and has me moody as well – knowing that the house where I visited, played and for short spells lived – will be passed on to others to inhabit fully with their own dreams and memories. It is an enormously happy house.
In clearing such a big space, things are unearthed with memories for all of us. We are a big family, and objects have been dispersed to children, grandchildren and friends. Big things like fridges and furniture have gone or been sold. Precious things like very old serving plates have moved on to other keepers in the knowledge that they will be passed down to future generations with the stories behind them growing all the while. And then there is the rest.
And the rest have their own memories as well. It was a shock to see the empty house last week, being cleaned, and a small pile of things in the middle of the lounge where christmasses were celebrated, and I watched cartoons in the arms of my long-gone grandfather smelling of peppermints.
These things were going to charity.
My grandma sat there, in her chair, asking if there was anything I would like before they went. She gestured to the dinner setting I remembered eating off during my life. The metal balancing scales I remembered playing with as a child, tablecloths with very vivid memories, some paintings (elaborately framed prints actually) that had hung on their walls. The remains of my grandfather’s record collection (I share his taste in Jazz).
I brought so much home, and here, in my home, they are not at home. WE ate dinner off one of her tablecloths, and it didn’t seem right at all. These memories are my memories and not our memories. They are in limbo, and have made me question what right I have to hold on to and bring them into the future. They will stay – I am the keeper for now.
Some will have stories, some will just have a home, and I hope when they are passed on – have stories of their very own for the future. New stories.