Dreams and Memories

I have a small treasure box. I bought myself while on a trip with my grandparents. Besides my journals and my teddy bear, it holds pretty much everything I considered special to me from childhood.

Some of it is just memories. I have the collar from the dog I loved. And a feather from one of the chickens we had on the farmette we lived on for 2 years. I loved living there, that was when we still went to church, participated in a homeschool co-op, and I was free to be a kid.

I have the memory cards from both of my grandpa’s funerals. And a shell from one of the bullets fired in the twenty-one gun salute at my the funeral of my grandpa who was in the Korean war.

But some of it has different meaning.
I have a scrap of paper with a bible verse:
Philippians 2:3-4 “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”
I don’t remember where got the paper, I think from a ladies bible meeting my mom went to. I do remember why I kept it. I wanted it to remind me not to be “prideful” and to always think of others instead of myself. I saved it to keep myself from having selfish ambitions like getting an education, or having interests outside of the home.
I have the two thank you notes I received as a child. (You never know how much those things mean to someone, especially when one is very rarely thanked.)

I have a sand dollar my grandma gave to me, and the ticket for the Ferris wheel at Navy Pier, from when my grandparents brought me there.

I have the stub of my plane ticket from when I was allowed to go to journalism camp. I have the ticket to the public school play my pen pal was in. I have the stub from the first of few the movies I was allowed to go to without my parents.
In short, I kept evidence of pretty much everything I was ever allowed to participate in outside of the home.
I have a small candle inside a tin (it fits in the palm of my hand) that I won as a prize for getting my short story published in a child’s nature magazine. I was so thrilled to be published. I remember I won a pencil as well, but I gave it away to the neighbor girl who I desperately wanted to be friends with.
I have jewelry.
A Navajo bracelet my grandma gave to me, that I was ashamed to admit I liked. My favorite leather bracelet from when I was 6, I loved it and wore it every day until it would no longer snap around my wrist. The necklace I loved as a young teen but felt foolish for wearing. The bracelet with little coins, each with one of the ten commandments engraved on it. My dad said it was to flashy to wear. Most jewelry wasn’t considered modest, so I rarely wore it, just once in a while while I was in my bedroom.
And I have this cover of a TV guide that I saved from when I was 16. I’m not sure why I saved it, I remember I thought she was beautiful, and I wished I could look like her.
I have a little handwritten note that I wrote for my mom when I was twelve. I remember I wrote it because I wanted her to be happy and pleased with me.
” What I want to be: By Me”
“I love cooking, baking, writing, reading, taking care of hurt people and cleaning things. And sewing and crafts. I want to be a mother with lots of children to love and take care of. And a husband to help, respect and love. I want to be a servant of the Lord always. I want to love God with all my heart, soul, and mind all my life. I want to trust my life in the Lord’s care. This is what I want to be when I grow up, a keeper at home that has a beautiful soul.”

It was all I was allowed to be, and I was already figuring that out by twelve years old.
It’s funny the memories that come back looking through a little box or treasures saved from childhood.
PS. Thank you so much for all of your wonderful comments and encouragement on the “Fun Mom” post. I would love to respond to all the comments, but I don’t have the time or energy lately. Just know that they are greatly appreciated, and that anyone who has struggled with feeling like a good enough mom should read through them. :)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10562805251128821984 Libby

    My mother kept things from my childhood and put them in a "memory box." I still have it, filled with Bible memory books and pictures I drew about Jesus. When I look through it now, it's like looking through artifacts from another world, a completely different life. And it's so very bitter sweet.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17046924507335607146 Amy

    Morning…. as I was reading, I was wondering to myself how you were feeling as you looked through your treasure box? Bittersweet?

    Thankyou for sharing such a personal treasure with us bloggy friends.


  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08135229596877003069 Michelle

    I love all your treasures. I have a box, too…

    I love your Bible verse that you saved. I find sadness in the fact that you kept it to keep yourself from aspiring to things like an education, though. I know I have said this before, but that is so foreign to me…and I don't like to comment on it because I don't understand it, but at the same time I feel like I should say something (not sure that makes sense).

    Thank you for sharing your special box!

  • http://www.ayoungmomsmusings.blogspot.com Young Mom

    Libby- It was a totally different world. Some of the years are fuzzy, almost like I don't want to remember them.

    Amy- It is kind of bittersweet, some of the things I kept are a bit sad. I was kind of excited sifting through the jewelry though. I kind of had an epiphany about what kind of style I like. Maybe I'll get to write on that in the future.

    Michelle- It is strange. It's hard to explain it, so much of the mindest is completely illogical and complex. Here is a post from a friend of mine who is reading a book on the mentality I grew up in

  • http://www.whisperingsonthewind.blogspot.com/ Me

    Thank you so much for sharing young mom! It is encouraging to hear that others have mixed feelings about the childhood treasures they've kept.
    Just last week I had to sort through all the stuff I had left at my family's home (I kinda left in a hurry) and seeing the old treasures, toys and special items was quite a journey.
    Well done on getting so far in your journey!!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05598890631695015818 Pippi

    Thanks for writing about this. I have one too; there's nothing from outside the home because I never did anything outside the home. But the box itself my dad brought me from Taiwan after one of his trips with his job, and my favorite thing in it is a tiny plastic baggie of black sand from Iwo Jima, given to me by a veteran we met through my parents' political involvement. The most unique thing is a pin June's husband made for me out of the denture materials he worked with. It has my initial, and a tooth stuck in the top.
    I saved all my letters and cards in a big box, since they were the only connections I had to my relatives and peers. I have fun reading them sometimes. And last year I came across a packet of my favorite school memories. That's definitely the bittersweet one, looking at the grades I got for insanely perfect work, and realizing how smart I was and how much pressure we were under to perform well, and that literally nothing I did was ever good enough. Until then I had thought that it must have just been my rebellion making me feel that way, and I felt bad for not sticking with it more. But not afterwards. I'm glad I found it.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09779444962182438901 Enigma

    I went through all my trinkets and diaries when i was in highschool and threw almost everything out. I wish now that i hadn't. thanks for sharing this. :)