My mum is nagging me again to put some order in my room. She checked in, for the 10th time in an hour, to see how advanced I was and stress me to finish faster.
“Yeah you are really eager for me to get out of here” I said, half joking, half sad. I’m moving out in 2 days and I still didn’t pack anything yet. It’s just so overwhelming and there are much stuff to sort out, decide what to keep, what to leave and what to donate. And some pieces have many memories that I just stop for some minutes to remember & then make my decision.
My mum volunteered to help, but I refused because her helping me would just mean constant nagging: “Why did you keep this? Why do you still hold onto this junk? Why didn’t you throw away these? What are these?” No, I’ll pass that, thanks!
But it takes a lot of time and I am so tired! Just thinking about what is coming next freaks me out. I am moving out because we will be living with my husband, in another city. This change is exciting and scary at the same time. We have been planning for this for months. On paper, this seems easy but the execution is another story. Completely.
After finishing with all drawers, the papers, the jewelry boxes, the books and the decorations, I decide to tackle the biggest task: clothes. I am kind of a messy girl, so my closet is already in a big mess and needs to be sorted out. That will just take the rest of the day. I take a deep breath and decide to finally get serious with this task.
I had put a large carpet in the middle of the room, and I put the clothes on it, batch by batch. By the fourth trip, I was almost done emptying the closet. My last trip held the last set of clothes and a small shoe box that was way in the back, totally hidden by my shirts. I had no idea what it held so I sat down, in the middle of all the clothes and opened it.
I wish I hadn’t’! it held all my memories with him… my first love. I didn’t dare looking so much at the pictures; I just shredded them and threw them away. I didn’t want anything to remind me of him. The small little box that was in the corner frightened me the most. I wasn’t sure what I would find there but I knew it would be painful to see. I put it aside and started sorting the clothes, mechanically, without thinking. I was just folding them and piling them up in categories: pants, skirts, dresses, shirts…
The box was put next to me, I had the impression that it was screaming at me, demanding my attention. As if it was saying: “stall all you want, but I’ll be here and you WILL open me“. Crazy right?
I finally opened the dreaded box and the time stopped. My breath became heavy and tears purred down my face, without control. That small box held our wedding rings. The rings that we didn’t get to wear. The rings we bought together, promising each other to be faithful till the end of time, and make each other happy.
What lies! And I was so stupid, for believing it and not seeing the truth sooner. 2 weeks after purchasing those rings and 1 week before our wedding, I discovered everything! I discovered all the lies he has been feeding me and all the affairs he was having. Just by a mere coincidence.
Memories of that day came rushing back, at once: I went to our new apartment, the one that we had furnished together, and I found him there with her! In OUR new apartment, the one where we were supposed to live happily ever after. In that moment, everything shattered. My life almost ended and the little innocent stupid girl inside of me died. He killed my happiness and all my hopes.
When I saw this scene, all the small details that I discarded came back and made clear sense: the late strange phone calls, the text messages that he deleted, the dates that he skipped, pretexting other meetings, other things that I don’t remember now.
And it was hard getting over him … days of crying, days of staying isolated. Tons of messages from relatives and friends trying to console me, genuinely or just to ease their spirits. Hopefully my parents helped me to get over that situation and to recover my life.
Years later, I couldn’t trust anyone and I hated all men. Ultimately, my current fiancé showed up. He is the true miracle. He is the man that he would never be. He took me out from this misery and restored my faith in humanity.
I didn’t want to remember all that. I didn’t even know when I threw this shoe box inside my closet. Finding it was a big shock. My mum came to check my advancement again, she found me in the middle of the clothes, holding the rings and crying. She understood, held me tight and took the rings from my hand. Later on she called my fiancé and he talked to me. He is the only one that could sooth me.
And I totally thank him for that. He showed me how much I changed and that old memories don’t matter anymore.
Truly, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger …
Originally published in WSA – July Edition
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