Tuesday, 19 February 2013

TT: What's left behind

A very not sincere sorry for this is not a Tasty Tuesday. It's not a sincere apology as I was never going to bake when I have but this one week of freedom left till the dreaded study begins yet again. Add some overcast weather and you've got this girl under the sheets watching a good old movie.

But I have not forgotten you all just yet. So I delight today with words of memory...

My great Aunt past away just under a year ago and it was a parting many of my large family deeply felt. She was the aunt, that aunt. The aunty who lived her life a singular being, but definitely not alone. She had more nieces, nephews, great nieces and nephews than one could only dream of. She went to places far and wide, she contributed to her local community and her city and she loved a good laugh. She lived a fulfilling life and she should be proud of what she left behind.

Being apart of what happens after someone parts this world was wholly new to me. I didn't realise how much is left behind, how many loose ends to complete, how many errands, how long it goes on for. It's a lot for someone to bear. She lived alone and she was (in no offensive terms) a hoarder. So naturally the clean up was more than a simple task. Come the new year and only now the job is done. All that time sifting through rubbish, dust and the odd gem. It got me thinking, why do we keep things? What's the point of it all. I've got it. I keep things because I reminisce, because I believe in sentimental value. So must have my dear old aunt. But then I look at the aftermath and all those objects that might have meant something to you mean nothing to those left. We had a big day where all the family congregated to lend a hand. Uncles and Aunts, Cousins and second cousins they were all there. An extended family gathering for one individual. Everyone had their stories, everyone discovered an item and remembered what it meant to them. It's funny what death does to people. It's strange how it can bring people together or tear them a part.

When someone passes you will always remember certain memories, you will sit in an empty house and look around and remember it full of buzzing energy, family together for Christmas, the lolly hunts in the backyard, the aunts chatting over the washing up, the old outhouse, the woman that greeted you at the door and said farewell with a friendly hooroo.

This is a photo of the famous NIWRAD gate that greeted my great aunt's guests. It's Darwin spelt backwards, it was a fond reminder of what once was their home. I don't know if there was much thought to the word being spelt backwards but I'm sometimes a little bit of an over thinker and I like to believe it was a symbol. To never look back. To always know where you came from but what you haven't done yet is often better then what came before.

So I learnt that maybe I should downsize the things I keep in my drawers. I learnt that death means so much in so many different ways. I learnt of memories, I learnt that there will always be a place for sentiment. It's almost a funny affair really. A loved one passes and people come together and as time goes on those same people laugh together, they argue about items left behind, they shrug it off and then they cry together. It's an uphill journey and a whirlwind of emotion.

I think what I really learnt was that it isn't about the house you lived in or the objects inside it. It's the person and what she left behind; the memories she gave others and the ones she took with her.


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