So we’re not exactly approaching the new year, which is my usual time of the year to start planning the forthcoming 12months, but having heard tragic news last week of a friend of a friend, I figured why wait.
Memories have always been a big thing for me, collecting them as almost a hobby. I remember growing up and keeping every scrap of sentimental paper, keeping all my exam certificates, newspaper cuttings of my Primary School friends and I when we won the local recycling project two decades ago. And photographs? Oh don’t get me started! I am obsessed! And not only with all my old childhood ones, taking new ones too! The hubby and kids laugh and tease every time I whip out the Canon or the iPhone and tell them to smile! But I can’t explain it, it’s just a massive passion of mine.
My mum passed when I was 22yrs old, too young to be without her, but old enough to have a mind full of memories. After she passed, I was fanatical about keeping everything I possibly find in the house that would remind me of her. I already had a pretty big selection of sentimental things; photos of us together when I was small, family pics, and an assortment of cards that she’d bought me over the years for various occasions, but to find some she’d kept from me residing at the bottom of her wardrobe was just amazing, and brought more than one tear to the eye. Add into that all the other little gifts that I bought her which I then reclaimed, including a teddy, the last thing I bought her for Mother’s Day, which is near every night, plus some items I’d bought on our travels which she never got to see. And there it was, Mammy’s Memory Box, something I still look at frequently, 16 years on.
Fast forward 11 years of being a mother and it’s needless to say I have accumulated quite the collection of parental memories. Hospital tags, scan photo’s and birthday candles are an obvious keep, plus the baby clothes I couldn’t possibly part with, each bringing memories of their own, crafts for every occasion, and then there’s the photo’s, literally tens of thousands of them, which I must back up as losing them is something that would actually kill me! (the next ‘to-do’ on my list!)
Out of all of the things I could possibly be scared of, Birds aside thanks to Mr Hitchcock, I am absolutely petrified of losing my memories. May sound silly I know, but the thought of not remembering my life or those around me is terrifying, hence the slight hoarding! But it doesn’t stop me from wanting to make more hence my planning this week for next years travels.
We make memories every day, in our every day life, but as far as holidays go, we decided a few years back that we’d take a break from the traditional Mediterranean family holiday, which we’ve done ever since the children were small, and opted for trying some new destinations, which of late, has taken us on a fabulous sight seeing trip around Northern France and around the UK, a place we never seemed to have time to appreciate even though we live here. But next year, the plan is to get a few of the wishes out of the jar and into our memory banks!
We have our own 7 Wonders of the World to tackle, a few of which we’ve already crossed off but experiencing them with the children in tow rather that when we’re older is definitely something we want to do, and reading some amazing Mummy Blogs on world travelling with children (I’ve already made notes in a new pad, of course I have!), I’m seriously looking forward to it, even though we have no idea where we’re heading yet.
Being fanatical about remembering everything is something that I don’t even think about. The things I keep, the compulsory daily photographs, it’s a no brainer for me, it just comes natural. But what about after my day? I wonder what will happen to all the ‘stuff’ that is a massive part of me, but that doesn’t really mean anything to anyone else.
The hubby already has instructions that my mother’s memory box needs to come with me, and the kids can of course keep the photographs as memories of their own childhood, but I do just hope that they too will appreciate the that your memories, in which ever format they take, photographs, videos, scraps of paper, should be held on to so tightly, and that they really do play such a massive part in who you are.