The house is on fire! Which 5 things do I save? Desperation engulfed me when I first saw this Daily Post challenge. “How awful, our whole lives gone!” was my first thought. And the next. Eventually I sat down to condense my thoughts, and I am surprised to find I can’t actually list 5 things I’d have to take to continue enjoying a meaningful life. For every wonderful object my mind throws at me I can’t help but shrug my shoulders: it can all quite easily be replaced. Photos? They are mostly on the back-up hard-drive, we never get around to printing them. I’ll take the hard-drive, alright then. Although if that failed I’d sigh, be sad for a while, and move on. The memories will always stay with me. I don’t need the photos to remind myself or prove anything. I’d like some of the photos up on the walls because naked walls are a tad stark, but I have got used to that. I would like to keep the photos, but I wouldn’t be lost without them.
Wedding ring? I always wear that, stupid. Unless I’m digging in the dirt or handling something gross. The odds are I would be wearing it. But imagine I weren’t, I had left it in the burning house. Would I risk my life to retrieve it? I might have given you a ringing (ha! see what I did there?) “YES!” until a few days ago, when husband told me he’d lost his. I discovered I wasn’t as upset as I had expected. It was a valuable symbol, but now that it is gone it is reduced to an object. Its disappearance does not confer any meaning onto our relationship. Husband is considering having a new one made in the image of mine so he can wear a visible symbol of our relationship like I do. The fact that it won’t be the ring I put on his finger when we got married is not material. We both know that event happened. The ring represents our dedication to each other rather than a particular moment in history. So again, replaceable.
iPad? I love it, but the insurance would buy me a new one. I’d buy a new cover for it, the same lovely wooden one I so painstakingly selected. Clothes I spent ages picking out? I enjoy browsing and finding things that are that little bit different, so it’d be a wonderful opportunity to buy a whole new wardrobe. My wallet? Now here’s something I’d definitely want to save from the fire. It would be such a hassle to have to replace my identity card, bank and credit cards, driver’s license and such. I hate wasting time on such mundane things.
Don’t get me wrong, I value all of these things; they all add something to my life. But it is a relief to find that my life does not depend on them. The nice things really are the icing and the cherries on the cake. Without them my life would still be intact: I would still have the people in my life that matter, a job, and the same opportunities and challenges. Which would include dealing with an insurance company and living out of a caravan for a while. Which, in turn, breeds a potential risk for those vital relationships to be strained too far, but let’s take one step at a time!