The Things We Keep

I continued the monumental task of sorting through all the boxes from my last apartment to decide what to keep, what to give away, what to take to school with me in the fall, and what to store in my parents' basement.

It was a pain. A really big pain. I discovered these boxes of books I had squirreled away. About 75-100 books. Sort of like the Library of Congress on wheels (in cardboard?). This also doesn't count the 400 other books I have. And the 20 journals- all filled.

I like books. Can you tell?

I have finally come to the realization that all of these books will not fit in a studio apartment. Also that I do not want to move all of these books to a tiny apartment. And lastly that I will likely never even touch half of them ever again.

I hate getting rid of books. They're sort of sacrosanct to me. But I really didn't have much choice unless I wanted to rent a storage space- which I didn't. So. Some of the books had to go. It was quite odd because so many of the books I thought I would keep forever- the stories that had captured my imagination or kept me enthralled for page after page after page- I was quite willing to donate to the library. Others? The musty, dusty, ratty used copies of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice? Couldn't ditch 'em. There were other books that I had to keep for reasons unknown. They reminded me of happy times.

I went through my CDs, too, and tossed several of them simply because I listened to them a lot in residential treatment, and they brought back too many painful memories. I like the music, but not the memories attached. Sort of like the CD I used to listen to when I was in my manic compulsive exercise stage. That's what that music is to me: running in 90F heat, exhausted, collapsing on the curb. These are things I'd rather forget.

I don't want ever to forget I had an eating disorder. I can't afford that, can't afford the total nonchalance around food. There's eating intuitively, which I want. But I also can't afford to skip breakfast no matter how late, how tired, or how inconvenient it is. That's something I keep close within me.

So many things in life, I'm willing to let go of. It doesn't bother me that much one way or the other. I don't like to keep things. That still means, though, that I do keep things, keep the strangest things. I kept my eating disorder for over 7 years. When you've had something be a part of your life for every waking hour for that long, it's hard to just...let go. Move on. You think about it a lot at first, but then you adjust. You keep the peace. You keep the happiness.
Those are the things I keep.

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mary said...

I like the sound of this post. Hope you are feeling as balanced as it sounds today!
I struggle with letting go of many of my treasured books and then there are tons that don't belong to me. I couldn't begin to count!
Perhaps I should move!

roark said...

loved this. the book part - totally sacrosanct. can't ditch a one. moving sucks, but it's a good workout! ;)

thanks for putting out there the "recovered picture" so to speak... it really helps.


Caroline said...

Love this post. Thank you. You have clearly thought things through and are very focused and aware of what you need to do.


Thanks for the comments. I doubt that I am recovered or as together and with it as you all might think, but I appreciate the comments nonetheless.

mary said...

Hey, moments of clarity are good if only while you type away. Write some more if it helps. I used to journal until the 'water runs clear' more mud for a moment. Life will always have challenges but I wish you some rest...sleep and a slowing of the anxiety. : ) /*

jonny jones said...

Books are awesome to have lying around the house and it makes good conversation pieces. The easiest solution to your problem would to research some good storage companies and you might even find a great price to store your books away.

self storage edmonton

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I'm a science writer, a jewelry design artist, a bookworm, a complete geek, and mom to a wonderful kitty. I am also recovering from a decade-plus battle with anorexia nervosa. I believe that complete recovery is possible, and that the first step along that path is full nutrition.

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nour·ish: (v); to sustain with food or nutriment; supply with what is necessary for life, health, and growth; to cherish, foster, keep alive; to strengthen, build up, or promote


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