A little over two months ago Bernice & I moved into a new home, and half of our two-car garage is still filled with boxes that we haven’t unpacked yet. We keep saying we need to find some time to go through them, but we seem to have everything we need in our house already so it’s easy to just ignore them. But one of these days we really need to sort through them and either use the stuff or give it away or throw it away.
I’m sure there’s some good stuff in those boxes. Things that we would actually love to use if we took the time to unpack them. In fact, I hate to admit this, but… though some of those boxes were just packed two months ago right before we moved, a bunch of them haven’t been unpacked since we moved back to California from Arizona four years ago. And even worse… some of them made the trip from California to Phoenix with us eleven years ago! And they’re still waiting to be unpacked. In fact, there are even boxes from our college days and from when our kids were little, a long long time ago.
Over the past two months I’ve felt bad every time I go into the garage and see those stacks of boxes. I feel guilty because I haven’t taken the time to finish unpacking. There probably is stuff in them that we could use. And I really should get rid of them so we’ll have more room in the garage, so we can actually park two cars in there. But we just haven’t gotten around to getting it done.
But today I decided I’m not going to feel bad anymore about my garage full of boxes. One of these days we’ll get around to dealing with them, but I’m not going to stress about it. I’m going to put that chore on my “plan to neglect” list for now. From here on out, I’m looking at those boxes in a new light.
That big box over there that’s labeled Memories – it’s going to remind me of the memory I made last weekend when we carved out time to play with our grandkids instead of unpacking that box. And the big one over there by the washer that’s marked Old College Books – that one will remind me of all the times I chose to read stories to my kids instead of sorting through old college books. And all those boxes over there labeled Wedding – they will remind me of all the time we gave this past year to help our daughter prepare for her incredibly beautiful & fun & awesome wedding.
There are a lot of boxes out there. Some of them have been in storage for a lot of years. But while they’ve been waiting to be unpacked, we’ve made some great memories doing other things. More important things. So for now, they can wait a little longer. I’m going to watch a T-Ball game.
Planned neglect. Something in our lives is going to get neglected. We get to decide what that something will be.
by Dave Gudgel