We looked through boxes of storage in Bob and Geraldine's storage room. It was difficult to see all the things that were important to my sister all left behind. The truth is: she left everything behind. Deborah actually sorted things for her dad. The job is overwhelming and she did a good job helping him progress through things.
She brought me several boxes marked, "Velma Reeves". (Yep, that's where the 'Velma' in 'Velma Elaine' came from only Velma Reeves was Velma Bell.) I carried the old suitcase that had belonged to Daddy.
Over the years since they have passed away, each of us brothers and sisters have acquired mementos from the things left behind. There were pictures, negatives, and other things. My brother, Jim, was a missionary to the Native Americans in Pruitt, NM in the 70s. One of the members of his church made a beautiful turquoise ring. He also made one for our month old baby, Stephen. It was only right that Jim has the ring now. (Stephen's baby ring is lost.) Other things that we had purchased for our parents were returned to the purchaser(s).
In the boxes were a few Christmas decorations. Boy, those brought back memories. There were letters from cousins and others with special messages in them. Some were death notices. There was an abundance of negatives. I'll check out how much getting those developed costs and do what I can to get the pictures to those who want them. The rest of the boxes had every bill that had ever been paid since 1977.
Now, I'm not putting my mom and sis down or anything because I did the same thing. I almost laughed about it. It took me back. I saw a pair of Mama's special scissors. (The ones I wasn't supposed to run with.) There was a pair of sunglasses from the 70s or 80s. The keys to our 1972 Buick were tiny! I put them in a large mason jar with the scissors and wooden thread spools.
To me, the best 'find' was a few cards from our game of 'authors'. Mama and I played authors and old maid for hours at a time. (Poor Mama, she had to entertain her late arrival when she was probably tired.) I put those in an envelope in preparation for scrapbooking day. (if it ever comes) The last items were funeral books for them. I set them aside to put the newspaper clippings in permanently.
The old suitcase reminds me of Daddy and Mama. They had gone through a lot in their lives and were a little battered as time went by. Still, they were strong and held onto God to the end. In this I see a reflection of myself, battered and hanging on.