When the Evacuation Notice Comes, What Do You Grab?

What are those items in your home that connect you to your history, identity, family? What if you no longer had a picture of your mom or dad? Or your childhood home? What if you lost that letter that pulled you through the darkest times? You know those shorts that both your kids wore when they were toddlers? Those shorts you kept tucked into your top drawer? What if they were lost? That vinyl album from when you fell in love?

Of course we survive. But let’s spend just a minute noticing those special things – those sacred things (sacredthings worthy of spiritual respect) – that we hold close in our lives.

Symbols – things that represent or stand for something else. Religions each have their own symbols. Countries. Sports teams. And so do we as individuals. The world may not recognize that repaired mug as a connection to a child who moved away long ago. But we do. We hold it and it’s like revisiting a moment, a feeling – a connection. Those recipes written in long hand may seem like nothing to a visitor, but we know they were written by our grandmother – with love. By capturing those moments we express the fragility of life and the passage of time. But, mostly, we are able to see and hold elements of what make us who we are. We, once again, tap into the power of others in our lives.

If we each had a room in a museum where we could place those special items in our lives, where the music of our lives would be playing, where the books that changed our thinking would be available, what would you select? Visitors would see a broken mug – but could not see the magic around it. They could hear the song, but not conjure up the disco ball and the cologne and the heart palpitations. But you could.

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