Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Throw Away Your Memories

I ended the work day and stepped out of the office to find that my wife had taken all our movies and CDs out of the cabinets. "Hey, could you figure out if there is anything in here worth keeping, and we'll just donate the rest."

My childhood movie collection: "Secret of Nimh," "Flight of Dragons," "Dark Crystal." All on VHS.
My highschool music collection: "The Murmurs," "Peter Murphy," "They Might Be Giants." All on CD.
The thing is - we don't have a VCR in the house. We don't even have a CD player in the house.  All I could say is, "I need a moment." I got emotional.
My rational and emotional sides needed to have a conversation. Because in reality I know that I am never going to watch those VHS tapes or listen to those CDs again. The movies? The songs? Sure - I'll definitely watch those movies on Netflix and listen to those songs on Spotify, but I will never use those physical copies of it again. So rationally, I should just give them up so that we can use the space to hold crafts for the kiddos. Crayons, pens, coloring books, etc., make a lot more sense to store these days than decades old media I can't play.
It's hard to give up the totems. There were hard times in my past on those things helped to carry me through them and it feels like that imbued those actual physical items with gravitas.  THIS HERE!  This here?  This CD holds a hundred nights of wandering in the dark pondering the meaning of life. It holds a piece of me inside it.
In the end - it's almost all going to go on to new homes. I'm keeping The Murmurs. I'm keeping the Sailor Moon CD. I'm keeping ALL the VHS tapes. Beyond that, I'll make due creating new totems in my life.