My mother once told me I should not say I love things. “You love God and people,” she said. “You just like things.” But I’m not so sure Mother was right.
There’s a small fat china pig on four tall wire legs standing on a small table in my living room. She brings a smile to my face whenever I stop to look at her. I found her in a little out of the way shop called Hog Hollow in St. Louis County about fifteen years ago. My hubby thought me silly to spend $16. on that pig but I couldn’t help myself. She looked so whimsical and she still does. She needed a home and love. I just had to buy her.
I’ve always liked pigs and at one time I might even have considered getting one of those small sized real pigs as a pet, but I never stumbled on one. I’m afraid dear hubby would have balked big time at that idea!
My china Pig has made it through many moves since then and she’s just one of the many things in my home that gives me smiles. My real live red (really carrot-red) canary whom I named “Tommy Tucker” sings beautifully and not just for his supper as the nursery rhyme Tommy. He’s simply a happy little feathered fellow who sings for reasons of his own and his song makes me happy.
All the things I treasure in my home, the pictures and lamps, the pillows and clocks, books and other memorabilia are more than things to me. Each has a living memory to be cherished. I remember where and when it came into my home and now and then I take a few minutes to give each one the loving attention it deserves. I have moved too often to have kept anything that doesn’t spark a tug at my heart. Although all my things may seem like too much to the casual looker, I insist I’ll take them with me into heaven itself unless I can give them to others who will care as much. You can imagine how I feel when I step into a thrift shop where the orphaned ones dwell for a time and are crying out to be loved again! Nearly as pathetic as going into an animal shelter!
I have no apology for loving things. They are so quietly persuasive. Of course I love people more, but people as my housemates? Not many would fit into my little nest. Still I seldom feel lonely. I have only to look around and if I find a broken heart among my souvenirs I let divine Love mend it so that it will never know it ever had been broken.
They say “You can’t take it with you.” Not anything. I’m not so sure about that. I have a big attic in my heart’s home where I can find any number of things that aren’t here anymore. There’s my little red tricycle and my Radio Flyer wagon. My sled, my dolly that I called Flossy, my collection of children’s books, my first grade class room where I proudly claimed my first desk. The French horn I played in the high school band. The house I grew up in that stood a-top a country hill. And the wee chapel where I was married in the Riverside Mission Inn.
If you ever think life is barren, broken, gone, just sneak into your memory attic and look for all the good things you’ve ever had. They are still there. Never mind the ghosts. They can’t stand the light of love.