And I wonder about all this packing. I wonder who will pack me away at the end. And I want it to be a suitcase bursting with memories and experiences. I want them to have to sit on the case to close it, because from every corner jump tears and laughter, a suitcase filled to the brim with life.
I have packed more boxes than a removal firm; stuffed more bags than a check-out girl; closed more suitcases than a frequent flier. I’ve packed hospital labour bags with intrepidation and excitement, cramming in a hundred things I’d never use but couldn’t be without. I’ve packed boxes to move house, wrapping each piece of my life in bubble-wrap. I’ve packed overnight bags for dirty weekends, cases full to bursting for fortnights in the sun. I’ve packed cars full of wine on bargain trips to France, filled virtuous black bags with charity shop drop-offs. I packed the memories of my son’s short life in a white cardboard box; a lock of his hair, his clothes, his handprint. I’ve packed all their ‘firsts’ in a cavernous case; first shoes, first paintings, first teddies. I’ve packed things with care, nestling my memories between layers of tissue. I’ve packed with no planning; disconnected pieces of my life stacked untidily in a broken packing case.
Photo credit: Talekinker