Friday, December 17, 2010

I am being with memories everywhere

Memories.  They are all over, it is truly amazing all of the things that can trigger moments from our pasts.

Just now, I was transferring my jewelry over into a new organizer that I bought at The Container Store (my heaven).  Piece by piece, I put my accessories into their new pockets, they now each get a little spot to themselves, no more tangles.   Most of it I rarely wear, perhaps because most of them have lived in storage and not in the suitcase that always travels with me, but now we actually get to share a home together and I am getting re-acquainted with them all.

Very few of these earrings, bracelets, necklaces, and rings have I actually purchased for myself, most I have collected as hand me downs and gifts.  My mother’s mother had an amazing collection of costume jewelry, really original stuff.  Each time I was in town visiting  she pulled her jewelry drawer open for me to look around.  I was only allowed to take one or two pieces per visit,  because she insisted I share with all the other grandkids, but no one else cared for her outlandish accessories at the time, so I have ended up with pretty much all of it.

Along with my collection of Grandma Hanser’s costume jewelry I have bracelets hand crafted by my sister, gifts from my mother, a pair of earrings from one of my best friend’s that were brought back for her from Egypt, and odd pieces that I have bought in my travels.  There is a brightly beaded necklace from a personal vacation to Bali in 2007, that I am quite sure I only wore once.   A gold embellished bracelet that I bought in Toledo, Spain on a trip abroad with a group in high school, when I was 17.  A black leather bracelet that belongs to Billy Idol that he left on stage the first show I worked with him at House of Blues Chicago in 2002.  My personal favorite is a gold ring with an Islamic prayer engraved into it that I bought at the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul when I was on tour with Natalie Cole in 2007.

As I move each piece from one organizer to the other,  these memories come up, memories of where they came from and where I have worn the.  The one that really causes me to stop in my tracks is my Grandma Anderson’s long pearl necklace.   Just last fall my aunt passed it along to me, and it has been in storage ever since.   My father’s mother passed away when I was 10 after a hard battle with cancer.  Although I barely remember my childhood, I remember having a bond with her that was like no other.  I have always felt her with me.  I know she is and has always been watching my closely, protecting me.  For most of the past 19 years of my life, it was my Grandmother Anderson that I prayed to.

The only nik-nak like item that I have kept in my possession after all of my moves and travels is a brass rocking horse figurine that was hers.  Even when I didn’t have a home, the brass horse lived on the parking break of my Toyota 4 Runner.  It has always had a home with me and now I have another piece of her with me.  The pearls feel so special in my hand that I don’t know if I can actually bring myself to wear them.

I remember where each piece of clothing, each pair of shoes, nearly everything in my possession is from, where I bought it, and what year.  This is because my life has always been in motion.  It is easy  for me to remember based on the tour that I was on, because I mostly shop when I am on tour as that is when I am making a solid income and it is the  perfect thing to do when exploring a new or favorite town on a day off.  There are memories sewn into everything in my possession.

I love these moments of reflections.  I am not my past, but all of those bits have shaped me and continue to shape me.  I never allow memories that may be good or bad, happy or sad to pull me down, to weigh me down.  I use all of my memories to live, because new memories are being made as I type.  I am empowered by all that surrounds me, by my past, by my future and most importantly my NOW.

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