We have a tradition in our family that's been used for a few generations that when a girl turns 16, she picks out her good dishes (that she'll use when she's older/married, etc). Mine is a Royal Doulton set. She'll get a piece or two at every birthday, Christmas, what-have-you. I'm not sure how practical this is, and if I have a daughter, I'm not sure I'll continue the tradition. As it is, my set is discontinued and I don't have all the pieces (most for a 4-piece dinner sitting, but I'm missing a couple). Anyways, this set stays wrapped up in boxes on top of my cupboards, literally collecting dust. It's not being used. J. was saying how she has a few nice dishes that she had but was sick of not using them and brought her bowls out to get some use out of them (and recently broke one, mind you. "But," she said, "at least it was broke while being used"). I remember my mother had this mixing bowl that had been in the family for *years*. I had a girlfriend over one day (this was back in highschool) and broke it. I'm quite sure the hearts of both my mother and I sunk, but we didn't want to make a big deal of it and make my friend feel bad about it (what could you do anyways?) so we carried on. But my mother and I exchanged looks and I could tell she almost burst into tears.
Anyways, the point of my ramblings is this... why do we hold attachment to certain things? We were questioning if they hold us back from moving on. Maybe we don't want to move on, and that particular item holds us to the past.. a memory, a close connection to a relative. But the funny thing is, we don't need that material item to keep those memories; they're in our heads, our hearts. She said I should bring my good dishes out and intertwine them with my everyday dishes. I looked at her hesitantly, "... but... I can hear my grandmother's voice in the back of my head.. what if I break one, or chip one.. ". "Then you break one or chip one," she says. Sigh. True.. but hard to let go of.
She said she had a bowling ball once before; custom-made to her and everything. But she used it a couple times and that's it. She donated it and was told later that there was this boy who wanted his own ball SO much (and could never afford one) that he almost cried when he got her gently used one. The point? Sometimes items we no longer possess can bless someone else's life.
My mother asked me if I wanted to donate my prom dress to this organization that takes used prom dresses and donates them to girls who can't afford their own. I didn't want to yet. Do I feel like an ass for not wanting to let go of that dress yet? Totally. Will I ever wear it (or for that fact fit in it)? No. Someone else can benefit so much more from having that beautiful black-lace dress. But.. I want to see it one last time. Ridiculous, I know. Don't judge. I'm just not ready to let go yet. It ties me to a date and a friend I had really good times with. People I loved and grew up with, became who I am with. I don't know why I want to hang onto my teens, they were tumultuous at best; but... it's all emotion, right?
Anyways, I'm rambling tonight. Sorry. I hope you get what I'm saying. Bring out the good dishes. Use that decorative bowl more. Wear that fancy scarf that was handed down to you. If you don't.. consider donating and helping someone else create and associate their own happy memories to it.