“My 50-year-old hands look so old,” a friend recently posted on social media. She continues, “I’ve been denying the idea of aging!”
We were examining perspectives around inheriting jewellery from our mothers, grandmothers, and great aunts. What is it that causes us to want to gift our material possessions? What is it that causes us to want to keep material objects from those who have passed on?
A recent movie features a mosaic of stories about love and loss, exploring our relationship to the objects, artifacts, and memories that shape our lives. (Nostalgia 2018, IMDB.com). Quite moving, the video opened up an enlightening discussion between my husband and myself about what really matters as our legacy to our family.
Since our death is certain, who will remember us when we are gone? What will they know about our hopes and dreams, our thoughts, our feelings, our values, our faith, and our well-earned wisdom? Is this something that can be gifted through trinkets?
Will anyone remember me when I’m gone? How will they remember me? Your life legacy is as unique and personal as your very own set of fingerprints.
You know it’s actually quite simple when you think about your legacy. People can choose to make it difficult, troubling or worrisome but then there are those who choose to make it a calm, reassuring, and settling experience.
With Mother’s Day having been recently celebrated by many, was it the trinkets or the experience of coming together that mattered most?
Perhaps taking a look at the emotional intensity of a trinket or an experience can help?
In the book, “Consumed Nostalgia: Memory in the Age of Fast Capitalism” it is noted that “For heirlooms to ‘work,’ there needs to be stories attached that touch the emotions.” What kinds of stories are attached to the heirlooms you have inherited or will gift? What emotions are associated with those stories?
Treasured stories often include gifts of kindness or generosity. Consider what Horace Mann said, “Generosity during life is a very different thing from generosity in the hour of death; one proceeds from genuine liberality and benevolence, the other from pride or fear.”
Now when considering gifting your material possessions, what story are you hoping is remembered? What emotions are associated with the stories of the heirlooms you have chosen to keep?
Written by Tamelynda Lux