It must be that halloween feeling, but I was entertaining some morbid thoughts today. I finally called the Salvation Army, to once and for all put an end to the epic saga of the purple couch. And since they were sending a truck and muscled men for the sofa I went around the house and gathered three huge bags of stuff to give away. I went a little crazy and will probably regret parting with the content of those bags.
But see, I was thinking about death and what we live behind when we die. When I think about my death (which is often, and usually not too unpleasant, as long as I'm the one dying and no one else) I end up fixating on the physical crap I would leave behind for my kids to deal with.
The other day my sister was back in France where she burned all remnants of her past life, all her journal writing from a darker time, and pictures of herself that represented that time. It made sense to me: she wanted to move on from that phase of her life and she did not want to leave behind that kind of trail.
My son noted that all the writing she did during that time was probably some of her best stuff.
But I'm like her. I feel I should absolutely throw away all the writing done when I was depressed, and all the agonizing years of infertility and treatment, or relationship issues with my friends, and all the venting about my husband. I mean, Anais Nin aside, journals are not to be shared, and especially not shared with your children. The words in a journal are like excrement: they need to come out and it is a relief when they're out BUT it's ain't the kind of stuff that should be framed and put on the mantle. Journals are testimonials of our basest instincts, our pettiest moments. Are those the words I want to be remembered by?
And there is the burden, which I shudder just thinking about, of giving my children no choice but to make decisions about the junk I was too weak or lazy to deal with in my lifetime. Another aspect of this is what to do with the good stuff: my favorite objects, my paintings, my photographs, and, for crying out loud, my unpublished manuscripts. I don't want to burden my children with the guilt of throwing those away, or worse: the responsibility to let the world becoming aware of my Oeuvre!
This is actually something that has been bothering me for a very long time. I want, I must, get rid of everything in my life time. But I assume that I will be given time to prepare for death. No one can guarantee that. I need to have a plan and show courage. Contemplating one's death isn't pleasant, but one must first think of those we leave behind.
For the record, the muscled men of Salvation Army came and notified me that furniture pick up was at their discretion, and they don't want to have anything to do with the purple couch!!!! This damn purple couch is to furniture what an colon obstruction is to the intestinal system. See the irony? What I wanted to let go of stayed, and what i did not want to let go of went.
So here you have it, a post about death and poop. Blogging doesn't get any better than that. Oh.. and by the way... what happens to your blog when you die? Does it go up in the sky with you?