Time Travel: Coping With Thoughts

I am a hoarder. Not just of items, but of memories.

I have kept every single thought, feeling, critique, and accomplishment. I have remembered good and bad. Words that stung and mantras that healed. I have never forgotten my hopes or choices. I write of moments obscurely and still keep my dreams safe in the shadows. Quiet nights, scarred by the screech of the train. Loud nights crowded with strangers.

I have kept diaries, journals, lists, scraps, and essays. I have formats from floppy disks to cloud files to napkins. I have photographic evidence.20170528_103143

Whether you wanted me to or not, I even remembered words. Words that complimented me classically or artistically. Words that made me sparkle with faith. Words that worked. I remembered the words that lashed me too. Strings of stings laced together. Insults that mattered and left room for contemplation. Words that worked.

I keep actions among my memories. I still have nights under the stars. I have sensations of comfort. A blanket tucked over my shoulder. A touch on my arm. I can still feel on my body where I was shoved or pulled or hit. Of all the actions, I can remember in-actions also. Like the time I was forgotten and found my way home 2 hours later.

It is all here. If not in my head then tucked in tiny boxes. Folded neatly or filed flat. I wondered about their importance my whole life. I saved them, hoping someday there would be meaning. A purpose. A function. Memories piled up like winter laundry. Categories shifted. Now, 20 years after I began, I cannot tell where I started.

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A maze of memories that carry meaning for only one. I tried sorting through it and treating it with a sort of mock respect that I though it needed to be valuable. I tried swaddling it in compassion and only petting it with the edges of criticism.

I know that I want it gone. I want my mind tidy and flushed free of build up. I know that when a loved one is invited into my mind, I don’t want to feel embarrassed or overwhelmed with the clutter. I want nothing to explain.

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Hoarding is a real disorder and I am not attempting to make light of it. I am, however, attempting to make a meta-metaphor about the value of saving thoughts. Here is a link to hoarding information by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America:

https://www.adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/obsessive-compulsive-disorder-ocd/hoarding-basics