family · History · Kids · Writing

Imprints of life

Our cellar got wet during the last bout of rain, and damaged some of the storage we keep down there. One of the items was a box of Rich’s childhood things, like birthday cards, drawings and old school work.

As they had been bobbing around on a tide of rainwater over the last few weeks, he thought they were all ruined but I have been trying my best over the last few days to hang out to dry as much of the paper that is salvageable as possible, as he does not have much of his childhood stuff left. It seems to be working and whilst I’ve been pinning it out, I’ve come across primary school books from the same age as Herbie is now and cards from Rich’s second birthday, which Gus has also just celebrated.

As I looked at the handwriting of those who are now not here, have disappeared from his life

or who still remain a constant, it made me think how people drift in and out of our lives, like the waves on a beach. And whether, in this transient digital age, it will all eventually be washed away – the footprints, handprints, the penmarks put to paper, and with it the jogs to our memories that boxes of things like this provide.

I know we should try not to cling onto material things, and we may not look at them very often, but they reflect who we are, and who we were, and it would be a shame to lose these old way of recording our lives.

I wonder if one day Herbie and Gus will be stood at a washing line, pinning their old papers out to dry and thinking the same thing…🤔


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