Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Order out of Chaos

So, I've been spending a good portion of my days in my storage unit.  I've been going through all my "stuff" deciding what stays and what doesn't.  As of late yesterday I had at least a dozen empty boxes of things I had either thrown away, consolidated into other boxes, or set aside to donate.

Somebody is going to be very happy with all the shoes I'm dumping.  There must be 30 pairs, or more.  There are some nice ones there....many I've never worn or only worn a couple of times.

When it comes to being nostalgic I am very much guilty as charged.  I save things, assuming that years down the road I'll come back to them and they'll have developed some kind of an emotional value.  I've got an entire box of newspapers and magazines of major events from my lifetime going back to walking on the moon, Viet Nam, John Lennon being killed, the Challenger explosion, Katrina - it's like a little time capsule.  I kept that.

I also found a few things I had forgotten I have.  One is a Journal that I wrote for a month in late 1974 as part of an English assignment.  It's all done very neatly, typed (on a typewriter) and double spaced, and it's fascinating to read it now.  It's full of the daily stuff that happened - weather, wrestling, school.

Wednesday December 11, 1974
Wrestling is making a wreck out of me.  I still have my hurt wrist and if it is still very sore tomorrow I may get it X-rayed.  Today I must not have stretched out enough because I pulled something in my back.  I had a wrestle off to see who would wrestle Varsity against LaSalle on Friday.  I did a host of stupid moves and managed to get myself down 7-1 going into the third period.  I knew it would be now or never but couldn't quite get it and lost, 8-7.

Saturday November 30, 1974
What a boring day.  We went out to the Scotch and Sirloin restaurant for dinner to celebrate our good grades.  My brother, sister, and I all made the honor roll.  It was the first time for my sister, who is in ninth grade and doesn't usually get very high grades.  It is also the first time for my brother because he is in seventh grade and it is his first year in junior high.  It is nothing unusual for me, though.  Anyway, I ordered a Filet Mignon and it was the best piece of meat that I have ever tasted.  It is my favorite kind of meat, especially when it is cooked right.

I found copies of the Kinawa Kourier.  It was the school newspaper for Kinawa Middle School in Okemos, MI where I attended 8th grade in 1972-1973.  I was elected as co-editor and there's a picture of our Journalism class on the front page of one of them.  Too funny...

There are newspapers from throughout my high school wrestling career.  A report from the NY HS Sectionals on March 1 1976:  In an opening round match David Rosen shocked second-seeded Bob Root of Ken-East on a referee's decision after the two fought to a 2-2 standoff.  I so remember that.

I found a spiral ring binder of at least 100 carefully hand-pages from a journal I must have written at the end of 1979, shortly after I had met my ex.  It's full of stuff from my time at Syracuse University:

Wed Jan 16, 1980
I got my grades today,  They are really disappointing.  Shit.  I'm embarrassed more than anything....I think my cum is 2.65.  Chem: C. Philosophy: C.  Psychology: B.  Chem Lab: B.  TCM 135: B.  Geometry: B.  Disgusting.  I better get my act together this semester.

then a little later, heading out to a local bar:

We went in and the place was really crowded.  Everyone from my floor came and took the table next to us.  We were just talking and drinking.  I had 5 or 6 drinks.  We got into a little throwing match with Gilberg (from my floor) who was at the other table and I got a drink spilled all over me.  I got up to pour a beer over his head and he got all apologetic.  

None of that serves any useful purpose, but I'll keep it.

Then - I found the box.

I have a shoe box full of cards, letters, and various things people have given me over the years.  It goes back to the mid 1980's, and there are letters from my ex-wife to me from just after we me.  There are Father's Day Cards, Birthday Cards, Anniversary Cards....and she writes a lot in them.

Needless to say, the tone of the cards changed a dozen years or so ago but she kept on writing.  Some of it is pretty mean by that point.

I hope and pray each day that you don't make any more crazy moves that will throw away our future hopes and dreams that we've worked so hard to achieve.  We are supposed to be in the best years of our marriage, not the worst.

The past 20 years have been the best years of my life - but how could I have been so blind?!  I thought you, too were happy.  I guess I really never knew you.  The sad thing is, I don't think you will EVER find true happiness.

All I can do is sit back and wait, and hope, and pray, that we will get the Dave back that we know and love.

It's actually difficult to read some of it because I do remember what it was like, and there were no easy answers.  But it's all there - through all the years.

I'm going to throw that box, and all the stuff in it, away.  Symbolic or not - it really doesn't serve any useful purpose at this point.  There's no nostalgia there.

Speaking of my ex- we were originally planning to get together yesterday afternoon.  Her day got too busy, so it got cancelled.  I'm not going to try to reschedule.

I expect to be here in the Valley for a couple more days - perhaps into the weekend.  It depends on how long it takes to get everything done.  I'm trying to sell the biggest stuff - some book shelves (used to be my dad's - someone stopping by today to pick them up), mattresses and box springs, my grill....Those are things that take up lots of room so things will be easier to manage once they're gone.

But then I've got a lot to do when I get back so even though my days are fairly full here I need to enjoy it while I can.  My next work project is on the horizon, but I'm superstitious about that kind of thing so I'll believe it when it happens.   There's lots to accomplish between now and then.

As for the Phoenix area, this still feels like a safe get-away place so despite all the hubub I'm enjoying it while I can.  It's going to get busier again soon.


Cassidy said...

If it makes you feel any better, Donna, until recently my father still had the jacket he wore when he was dating my mother - in 1960. And it was ugly even then. lol

He also still has their first TV, which would likely cause radiation burns if we were to turn it on today. Pack-rats...

On a more serious note, I wanted to thank you for your blog and your book. I'm just starting out (a little over eight months on HRT), and your writings were/are enormously helpful and comforting. (Oh, and someone who slings verbiage for a living, you are a wonderful writer.)

Thank you again, Donna. And good luck restoring order to you little corner of the universe!!!

== Cass

sweetbrandigirl2004 said...

Donna thats a fine looking gas grill...I'll bet it doesn't get much use with all your moving around....LOL

Max said...

It’s a good thing you were able to clean and sort out your things in your storage unit. I’m pretty sure that you made many people happy when you gave away your 30 pairs of shoes. Renting a storage unit is really a good practice. You can place your old stuff here, and then give them away. Thus, your old things can be greatly used by the needy.
Max Champion

Ericka Muldowney said...

Storage units can help get you more space without having to sell your stuff. A unit can also provide you with quick access to your things. Because you pack your own stuff in the secure self storage unit, finding your items will be fast and easy. Also, storing your items in a climate controlled self storage unit will deter these from damaging aspects such as musty odors, paper rot, and wood degradation.

Erik Littles said...

Sorting and finally saying goodbye to your valuables is difficult, but like everything good in this world, we have to let them go -- eventually. Like what Max said, your old things may be of use to another person, so why not give them up for a good cause? By the way, make sure that you organize and pack your valuables accordingly to keep them from getting damaged while in storage.

-Erik Littles

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