When you move it is all about the boxes. A while ago I started sending random things to my mom. When you are moving and you know you are moving, it is best to put things aside to send as you go. Otherwise you may forget something. Like the stockings for Xmas. Or your favorite ornaments. And when I was packing boxes to send to my mom, I thought that numbering and tracking them would be a really great idea. So smart and prepared and unlike me. Well, now we are here, in NY and some of the boxes are in my mom’s attic and some of the boxes are in my Aunt’s basement. And we needed to find the stockings. Of course, for some reason, I can only find the list of contents for boxes 6-9 and the Christmas items were not listed in any of them.
That meant we had to open boxes 1-5 to find what we were looking for. We started at my Aunt’s house because those boxes are easier to access. She had some of the 1-5 boxes but none of them were the right one. We went to my mom’s in the afternoon before family dinner at a friend’s house. We got up in the attic and literally the last box we opened (box number one) had the stockings and ornaments in it. Success. We also took the box that had DVDs of our favorite movies (think Grease and The Breakfast Club). One day all the boxes will come and live with us.
Along with the moving boxes from Hawaii, my place is currently full of 18 or so boxes from my Dad’s house. It is all that is left of the home that he grew up in. Of his life. Of all that he was. There may be some things of nominal value but the things that were in the house for living, the everyday things, seem to have disappeared. The things that hung on the walls like all of my grandmother’s photos. The things that my dad assembled while he was really active in the veteran’s association. The furniture. All of the things that made up their lives. The things that made that house, a place that I loved when I was a child. Those things are mostly gone. It is unclear what happened to everything. Suffice to say that I could have definitely done more. There is no one to blame. There is no one to ask. Going through my dad’s boxes is my winter project. It is not one that I am looking forward to.
And with Christmas so close, my PO Box has been filled with Amazon boxes. And then, yesterday, I received a box from a friend who I would liken to a guardian angel. She seems to always know what to do and when to do it to make you feel really cared about. When I was going through a rough patch with school she sent me a bouquet of flowers. Not just any bouquet but the most beautiful one I had ever received. And that is true to this day. So this guardian angel friend sent me a box. When I saw that it was from her, I barely made it to the car before crying. I texted her and told her that. She told me to just open it. She told me that she had put something in there that reminded her of when we met. When I got the box home, I put it under the tree. Later in the day, I tried to open it. I managed to slit the tape and peek inside. I saw a card and that was about it before I had to set it aside and cry some more. I swear that I will open it one of these days.
Don’t get me wrong. Being home is great. Seeing my mom almost every day is great. But I was in Hawaii a long time. And when you are anywhere for a long time, you assemble a lot of people. I left behind a lot of people. So as happy as I am to be with my entire family on Christmas day, I still find myself crying over the “I’ll be home” songs sung this time of year. I don’t think that can be fixed or changed. I think that it is what it is. And I think that maybe I will always just be happy/sad at Christmas time.