Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Use it all now.......

The dampness is in my bones again, as I sit here writing. The peculiarly British dampness. Ah.....home!

Yesterday was a strange day. One of my Facebook friends from school days back in the dim and distant past died suddenly, and it was a huge shock. He was a year older than me, and way, way too young to die. And that set me off on many dark and chilly paths in my mind. So I wrapped myself in a blanket, fired up 2 recession heaters, and fell asleep on the couch and woke at 1am. That was essentially the end of the sleeping. So I am not operating at full strength today.

You know how we keep things for "special occasions"??? The crystal glasses. The special dinner service. The heirloom table cloth. The silver. The "best" vase. Etc etc etc. Clothes fall into this category too. Things we wear for special events. We all have them. We continue to use the old mugs because they are not chipped or broken, and save the new ones for guests. Do you do this? Most of us do. And I am here today to tell you to STOP RIGHT NOW.

Use them all. Tonight. Use the crystal. The silver. The special plates. Wear that outfit. Who could possibly be more special than you? Or your family? So if something breaks, who cares. So be it. It is a thing, not a person, so use them all up. Make your home and family the special ones, and do not wait. Whatever you do, DO NOT WAIT for that special event. Every day is special.

As I look round my home, I see so many things I keep to use now and then. Why do I do this? What is more special than now? Now. If we wait, they will be left unused. And what on earth is the point of that. We have no idea if we will be here in a day a year a decade. Now is what is important and celebrating the gift of each day is even more so in practical ways. Inherited things are made to be enjoyed, not hidden away. If you want to put that porcelain figurine in the centre of the dining room table tonight, do it. The candles....light them now.

And stop keeping that special nightie for hospital wear. Heaven knows that if you do end up in hospital one day and that is a big "if", someone can rush out and buy another couple of nighties, more suited to survival in hospital together with those delightful white anti thrombosis socks you get to wear.

Sigh. I am on my high horse, it seems. Life can be so incredibly short, you see, and keeping things for "some day" will not create the memories of beauty and delight which we all want to enjoy and have our families enjoy too. So all I really want to say is use everything. Delight in special things. Bake when you feel like baking, and not just for special events. Celebrate. Beauty and special-ness make everyone smile.

Tomorrow is not guaranteed.


Stripeyspots said...

Life is always such a paradox. Out of the sorrow of losing somebody, you can rediscover the joy in your own. It's a good resolution though, to make the most of everything and not postpone.

Vee said...

My grandmother saved everything for good. While she lived a good long life, there were many things never used all tucked away in their original boxes. It always made me feel sad. Now I do have a best set of clothes reserved for whatever and I do not always use the best dishes. Oh! I see what you're saying. Yikes. I'd better get going to see what I can haul out.

Hope that you sleep well tonight without any "dark and chilly paths" to pester you.

Donnetta said...

Sorry to hear about the news you received! Trusting today you find an extra measure of warmth and rest, not only for your body but for your soul.

Also, thank you for this post! I am guilty as charged... saving the nice things for, well, who really? As you said, isn't my family the most important of all?

Taking your advice and pulling out my china this week! When the family stares at me in utter confusion, I will use the moment to reaffirm to them how important they are to me!!

Excitement building in my spirit at the thought of it!

Thank You!

PEA said...

Very well said, dear Linds!! For years I would never use the "good" dishes/glasses or the "best" linen, etc, but a few years ago when my best friend died at age 40, I realized, just like you did, that we never know if tomorrow will ever come for us so why not use every day what we love most? Nowadays I use everything, even my vintage dishes:-) We need to live for today!!!

So sad to hear of the passing of your old school friend, sending big hugs.

By the way...welcome home:-) xoxo

Janine (txmomx6) said...

Great post, Linds .... no matter what time of the day/night you wrote it.
And so very, very true.
How well we know that life is short and you only have right now.
Thanks for the inspiration.

Mary said...

You are so right, why keep the nice things tucked away...If you have them.....enjoy them...

Crystal said...

Well put, Linds! I use my good china regularly and put the good cutlery in the kitchen drawer a few years ago to use daily. My kids are not going to want these things when I'm gone and they were given to me to use - so I use them now.

I have many colleagues who saved everything to do in their retirement and sadly, never made it to retirement or were gone within a few years after retiring. Bob and I have tried to do better, which explains all the big travel trips we've done in the last 5 years. I hope we will have many more opportunities but if we don't, we have some marvelous memories made already. Too bad we have to save for retirement! Bob always says you should get a million dollars when you are 20 and then spend it on the things you need until it's gone when you die! A novel concept!!

Stay warm - we are headed to -30 degrees C tonight!

Sugar said...

Very true! I use my best china as much as I use my old stuff. Even use the souvenir spoons.

Edith said...

Good post...and good things to ponder. I also tend to save some stuff for "good"...need to start using it all.


(and thanks for the wonderful comment on my blog)

Linda said...

I can hear my Mom's voice in your words Linds. Some time ago she made the decision you are urging us to make. She began to use the beautiful things she had put away for "special occasions" every day. I think it is a wonderful thing to do.
Thank you for the gentle nudge.

Jane said...

Do so agree, Linds, but it's taken me years to realise it. So sorry about your friend.

Dawn said...

My grandma was the same way - everything we'd given her for gifts was in her drawers when she went to the nursing home. Sad.

I am going to take this very seriously and set the table nicely for the girlies and Dwight tonight! I tend to eat on the run as I'm serving everyone as if I were a short order cook and a waitress!