Emotionally Yours

My father-in-law’s room was like a big store house with piles of news papers, magazines, letters, pamphlets which no body dared disturb. There was an old record player which found a place of pride in his bed room. Though never played in decades, every effort to replace this junk piece with an operational music system was met with resistance. Equally strong was his bonding with the old alarm clock which was lying out of order for years but could not be discarded.

It is a fact that emotionally we are so much attached to the things that we are not ready to throw them even after they have outlived their utility. We keep clinging to useless stuff in the hope that some day, some one is going to put them to some use. No wonder my house looks like a museum, full of junk articles with which one or the other member in the family is sentimental about. In one corner of the verandah there is a permanent fixture, an old Vespa scooter which has not been driven for ages. Then  there is an ancient heavy duty ceiling fan, a legacy of the British period which adorns the ceiling of one of the rooms because attached to it are fond memories of head of the family.

Over a period of time, I must admit I have become finicky about my own collection which I fiercely guard. In fact, I am so sentimental about the odd pieces of decoration, ceramic articles  and the little knick knacks which I have collected so fondly that I find it hard to throw  them out; even if they have  lost  their sheen, got chipped off  or become faded and jaded. My children criticize me for cluttering the house but I ignore their taunts. In fact, so deep is my attachment that despite the addition of new decoration pieces, I cannot think of parting with the old ones. Since I don’t have the heart to discard any of my prized possessions, the old decoration pieces get shunted from the drawing- room to the lobby/bed rooms and then to the back courtyard. No wonder my backyard has become the parking ground, or I may say, the final resting place for many of the junk pieces which have migrated from other parts of the house.

Looking back, I realize how ruthless I had been in clearing the ‘junk’ collected so lovingly by my parents. Every time I visited my parents, I would take upon myself the task of clearing the ‘mess,’ heartlessly dumping the useless articles and pieces into the dustbin. My mother would resist my overzealous cleanliness drive. At times she quietly rescued and recovered the articles discarded by me, many of those I would find restored at their designated place on my subsequent visit. As I grow old, I realize how difficult it is to part with the things which are emotionally yours.


Published  as MIDDLE  in The tribune dated 26 May2012 .


8 Replies to “Emotionally Yours”

  1. Hi Rama. I’m Madhuri. It’s true that human nature calls in such an emotional attachment with things and people. But I suppose that we all must learn slowly detachment which has to start from things and then it will move to people. By detachment, I don’t mean that we shall run away from our relationship and responsibilities. But not been able to part from things is giving it a name of emotional attachment.

    1. A spiritual interpretation ! True to your nature! Thanks Madhuri.
      Actually the piece has been written in a lighter vein, published as MIDDLE in the The Tribune .

  2. Very apt description of old peoples’ ‘attachment with their possessions. In those days people could not buy things at the click of a button. Resources being limited everything had to be planned carefully and money was put aside little by little.Memories got inter woven as buying assets called for a celebration,hence the attachment .letting go of thing was like parting with a piece of life. Our generation is on the cusp so we are lesser attached with older things .More financial security has made us bolder less emotional about old equipment etc.But we still get shocked by the youngsters ‘speed with which they acquire new things and dispose off anything that loses its charm in their eyes. So as usual great insight Rama.

    1. Thanks Ranjnaji .I am so glad that not only you read the articles with interest but also add value by giving your insight.

  3. I loved the light note of humour in this one. Aptly projected the human emotions of possesiveness .I think its part of all of us.

  4. Ramaji well penned. It is said old age is a person’s second childhood. Just like children old people are attached to material possessions. Today’s generation is fortunate to procure material things easily so they get rid of old things in a jiffy. For the older generation this is not clutter but a piece of their heart. To part with with your Sweetheart is heart-wrenching so is the case. Well explained in a lighter vein.

    1. Thanks Preeti. I like your expression ‘piece of their heart’. You have expressed beautifully how parting with your’sweet heart’ is not easy.
      True today’s children belong to’use and throw’ generation, perhaps they are more practical . Or may be as they grow older , when spend their own money, they too will get sentimentally more attached to their things and will find difficult to part with.

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