We’ve made a little fun of ourselves about it, but one of our family’s after Christmas traditions is going through the house, filling up the trashcan and loading up bags for Goodwill. With the holidays, things come in, and since we really live in our whole house, some things must leave to make way.
Much of this practice has to do with saying, “no, no more,” or “too many,” or “I can’t remember when we last used that,” or “continue to love the giver but release the gift.” We pare down, we negotiate, we eliminate and rearrange on sparser shelves.
But the other side of this task is in admitting that there are just some objects we love, and whether or not we can ascribe to them a certain use or beauty, they feel significant. We like to have them around us. They lift our spirits, they recall fond memories. They comfort. Talismans.
- a river pebble from the Middle Saluda, site of so many summer adventures, smooth beneath my rough midwinter fingertips
- my coffee mug from Monticello, extra large, with a handle that just fits my hand and a perfect curved lip for sipping (When my original was broken recently, my husband ordered a replacement that same day. He knows how much I love it. )
- my whole heart locket, given for my fortieth birthday by my friend Jill. I wear it often, as a reminder that I want this to be my all-in, show up with my whole heart decade.
- a small pottery bowl, bought from a young potter at an art fair. It gets moved around the house and what it holds changes, but it never fails to give me pleasure.
It is intriguing to me why some objects become significant to us, while we eagerly relinquish others that are as lovely or that would seem meaningful. I like the mystery of how a few things, in a specific season, find their way from our hands into our hearts.
What are your talismans?
Gratefully writing along
with other good folks
Joining in Lists With Friends 2014