This morning, Parade Magazine had an article by Connie Schultz. She wrote about the five things she would take with her, if she had to flee her home. I thought of this myself. I really, really had to think, because I am a pack rat, and I have had to leave behind my belongings twice. Both times, I was able to bring away much…just not everything. I still mourn the loss of my books, and work hard to release the desire for those, telling myself they are only books, and I can buy them again, nevertheless…
So when I pondered this question, I determined the following things were the ones I must always have, assuming all the living things are safe:
My grandmother’s wedding ring. I was given this by my mother on the day we buried Grandma. After my mother, growing up, she was the most important adult in my life. Grandma actually saved mine. She was my one most enduring person, who loved me unconditionally. She taught me how to BE. For years, I wore her ring around my neck on a chain, and if I am ever fortunate enough to find love again and marry, I want this to be my wedding ring.
My “heroes” pictures. On the wall in my one tiny little hallway, I have the pictures of the people who were my strength and salvation when my life crumbled and I seemed to crumble, as well. These were my confidants, my siblings, my friends. They were the ones who called, wrote, traveled miles and cross-country to visit me, offered to travel around the world, housed and fed me, and listened to me cry, held me in their arms, and were steadfast. They still are. I don’t need their pictures, but it is my small way of honoring their love.
My philosophy slate. Fifteen or more years ago, I had two moms of students who gave me an old school slate. It has “Christmas 1914” scratched in one corner. I have used this slate ever since I received it to chalk my current “philosophy.” I collect sayings and quotes that appeal to me, and I try to attractively write the current one to remind me of a virtue, make me laugh, or just give me encouragement. In Arizona, I hung the slate by the back door. In my tiny house, I have my slate on the plate shelf that lines my kitchen. The current philosophy is “Don’t ask God to guide your footsteps, if you are not willing to move your feet.” More often than not, my philosophy helps me in ways I would never have guessed.
My glass teal and pink flower paperweight. When I was seven, my mom took me with her to collect advertising for the neighborhood newspaper for which she worked. I remember it vividly. It was dark and we were in an antique store. Mom told me I could pick out anything I wanted. That’s my memory. The fact was, she probably didn’t give me carte blanche. I chose this paperweight, and it cost $2.50. How I remember this, I have no idea, but I still have the paperweight, and have added several others to make a display, including the apple one Mom gave me when I began teaching.
My rosary. I actually have several now. I love each one. I wish I were a better pray-er of the rosary. I think it is something that takes time to acquire, and since I am a new Catholic, I haven’t had enough time, but it is becoming easier. I pray with a group on Wednesdays. There is power in numbers, both with support and in prayer. I have seen the results.
What five things would you take?