i was keeping a bunch of random stuff that really didn't need to be kept (like old receipts, movie ticket stubs, old magazines, EVERY sports jersey i ever played in) in order to feel like i had a past. i didn't really have photos or anything that TRULY mattered that reminded me of my childhood. my partner started to get extremely annoyed and i started to get extremely anxious. which caused me to save more and more and more random stuff.
i talked about my 'hoarding' with my therapist and it was suggested that the reason i was hoarding such insignificant things was that i felt like i didn't have a past because the past i saw in photos and such weren't in alignment with my gender identity. the box is for me to build my past in. i can put whatever i want into the box and my partner can't say anything about it as long as i get rid of the things that don't really matter.
today i pulled out the box to put another item in it. it is starting to get pretty full. at first i was sad because it meant that i couldn't put as much in it any more. but then i realized that it also meant that my past is getting full. which is what i want, right?
the box contains a myriad of things: the first tie i ever tied by myself (my dad's actually...he gave it to me when i was 8), all of the paperwork to the first car that i ever owned (and subsequently survived what would have been a life-ending crash in), a magnetic notepad with my favorite cartoon character on it, the last tea bag that i brought home from my semester abroad (and can't get stateside), an empty bottle of bug spray (that i still can't figure out why it means so much to me). these are the thing that are important both to my gender identity and the past that i lived while trying to find it.
this box anchors me. this box has freed me. this box, unlike so many others, is one that i am happy to claim as my own. the past is often very rough for those of us who didn't fit with the identity thrust upon us, this is how i reclaim that past. this is the box that i choose to build my future on.
happy new year