Lost Belongings

Stuff, personal effects, items, these are all things that seemingly bear little significance when we reflect back on life. We buy, barter, and trade for the things we think we need and then we cast them aside or we keep them until they have degraded into threads and plastics. Is it all meaningless in the end right? We ultimately must leave behind the things we cherish, discard them for space, and we can’t take them with us in the end. Well, we can take them with us but we will no longer be able to perceive their touch, smell, taste, and feel.

While living, we select what is important to us and we hold these things dear. We make unofficial shrines to thoughtless beings and we think that the possession we have will become eternal artifacts to everyone else. We want others to treat our carefully constructed collections with the utmost care and respect. Why? That is a good question. If it is all going to end up recycled or in a landfill then is it necessary to demand such attention and care? I want others to treat my things as if they were their own. I expect this result when people handle my trophies and I get angry when they don’t. Deciding if this is rational has been consuming me after a recent incident involving an essential item for a good night’s sleep—the pillow.

I got incensed when this particular item was not returned to me and the rage was all consuming. It was as if someone had hurled a disparaging comment my way but the anger had no release. Frustrating situations arise almost constantly and we handle them with time, words, and space but when physical items are missing it becomes a more desperate situation. This is because there is no amount of words or time or space that will bring what is physically lost back to you. If it is gone, it is not coming back. Ever. So are belongings important? Should they carry so much weight? Should they cause fear and stress and anger in their disappearance? Short answer, no. Long answer, if you get lost on the way home you can use a map, phone, friend, or stranger to help you find your way. If your pillow gets lost on the way home, it cannot call out for help. It cannot reconnect with its owner. The item is out of place, you are out of sorts and it is not coming back. There is no time, no soothing, no talking that will heal physical separation of a being and an item, of two beings even. We can only repair emotional separation with time and healing and talking. It is unfair and it is so misunderstood. The problem with lost treasure is that it is never coming back. It is gone now and must be replaced with a new book on the shelf, a new blouse in the closest, a new pillow on the bed lying next to you.

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