Growing up I had a "Box of Remembrance" - it's what my parents used to collect everything from our childhood. Photos, school projects, report cards, yearbooks, drawings, greeting cards, letters... it's all in there from the day I was born.
When I moved to Utah my mom packed the contents in boxes and had them shipped out to me. I've kept them stored in the back of our closet along with the seasonal decorations, Halloween costumes, and luggage.
This past Saturday we were digging around for Josh's old baseball glove, and I happened to find it inside one of my boxes. I had some spare time, so I decided to take a pleasant trip down memory lane for the better part of my afternoon.
It was like skipping from memory to memory, barely recognizing at times the person I used to be.
I remembered how involved I was with church, how clique-y I was in middle school, and how ridiculously boy-crazy I used to be. I read through every pen pal letter I received, through yearbook autographs, old notes passed in class, and even the congratulations cards my mom got when I was born.
I think it's pretty amazing that I can say I still have all of these things. Even if I only look through them once in a great while, I still seem to learn and gain a better understanding of myself and those I grew up with.
Naturally, I went through a throwback posting spree of old pictures and shared them on Facebook, waiting for old friends to recognize the same happy nostalgia I was feeling.
But while scrolling through my news feed I learned one of the guys I used to go to high school with died in a tragic accident. He was 26. It was so surreal because I dated him briefly when I was in the 7th grade but I never really knew him beyond that (for the record, he dumped me for his old girlfriend and I never quite forgave him). We were barely acquaintances, and although I didn't know him as the man he was when he lost his life, I was still shocked and sad when I found out. It really shook me for most of the day, and still does as I see our mutual friends in mourning this week.
It's just strange to me... this life. I forget all the time just how short it is.
Afterwards I started wondering how big of a mark I've left on this world, and how the people I've met along the way might remember me. What kind of legacy will I leave behind? I woke up Sunday morning I felt more motivated than ever to start up the blog again.
I guess that's one of the things I love about blogging - it's a record of my own autobiography in progress - my box of remembrance, continued. I feel a little better knowing if I die tomorrow that at least my blog will still exist, and the words I've written can be remembered and treasured for many years to come.