Every New Year, we all have the same resolution in life: Let go.
Let go of the negative things, of the unbearable memories, of the people who have made the previous year a trial for us. Let go of the burdens and start the New Year with a new picnic basket that we could fill with new memories, new experiences and new possessions that will define us.
But let’s face it. Letting go is easier said than done especially when it comes to material possessions.
Those thoughts have popped in my mind as we prepare to move back into our house, which underwent two months of extensive renovation last year.
That was the same house in which I had lived for all my life, and seeing the entire renovation process from start to finish (we were able to get an apartment just a block or so away, so we were able to check on the progress everyday) has been, admittedly, a shock for me.
After all, the last time our house underwent a major renovation was sometime in 2006, when we decided to start our own sari-sari store (which later fell victim to the Covid-19 pandemic).
Seeing the gate and fences, not to mention the toilet and fittings in our bathroom, replaced made my stomach churned. My own room was gutted out and its dimensions changed (the walls were made of plywood, anyway, so they were easy to demolish). Electrical fixtures were changed, the ceiling and the roof (which had been leaking so badly, anyway) were replaced, and except for a few overhead lights, nearly everything was brand new.
And there’s the issue of the things that we had boxed up when we moved out two months ago. Once we unpack them, there’s going to be considerable debate on which items to keep, which to donate and which to throw away.
That will not be easy for me, as I have to admit I am one of those one of those “hoarders” who save everything.
Old books, old treasures from my childhood, even scraps of paper containing memos or inconsequential information – everything tends to end up in some drawer or some shelf, even inserted inside books.
I’m pretty sure unboxing will bring a lot of memories – good and bad – when I finally start sorting out which things to throw away and which to keep. And while it will be a hard task, there comes a time when I had to let go of things that I had treasured all my life.
After all, as they say, a new house is a symbol of a new life. That, I believe, also holds true for a renovated house.
A new look means a new life, a new chance to build memories with family and friends. A new chance to rectify the mistakes of the past and make things better for the family.