Wednesday, October 22, 2008
"You don't want to be the type of girl who has a lot of baggage."
People always use that term; BAGGAGE. We tell people to stay away from the guy with the crazy ex-girlfriend cause of the "baggage" or a man shudders when he finds out that his object of desire has "Daddy issues" because that means more, "baggage." Any type of spawn, leaching family member, stalking ex, emotional damage or bitterness = baggage. And really, the list can go on, baggage comes in all sorts of shapes and sizes.
Friends warn us, steer clear O' the baggage.
It's like we're all supposed to somehow avoid having bags.
Before my trip I stood in front of my suitcase and stared at it for about 20 minutes, trying to visualize what it would look like to roll my clothing into such tiny balls that it'd actually fit into my pea sized suitcase. First off, I suck at visualization, mental images have no room in my brain full of rantings. When the suitcase was finally full, it was amazing how much I could actually FIT into a carry-on suitcase, that's smaller than my torso. In one tiny bag, I had enough to last me over a month and enough that from one sweater change to the next could completely change "my look." What's in our bags (both literally and figuratively) can be a wide range of things that express different parts of you...and your story thus far.
Then, the other night when I was having wine with a girlfriend she mentioned "baggage." Having it, not wanting it, not having it, whatever....the whole thing became this discussion about;
is having baggage avoidable??
For instance, sure I could have gone to Europe without my carry-on and I could have rocked one outfit the whole time, but bringing my yellow hat and my checkered scarf gave me some character. Whatever was in my bag wasn't a NECESSITY, in fact, most things aren't. The things in my suitcase were just little expressions of ME....and essentially, isn't that part of what baggage is??? A handy way to carry around those "extras."
None of us want to carry around a bag full of bricks, that's simply too exhausting. But to say you have, at one time, carried around a bag full of bricks....doesn't that add to your character as a person now? Can't you see the strength in your arms and feel the occasional pinch in your back because of that "silly bag of bricks." Your back aches and your stories from carrying that piece of luggage around made you, just a bit stronger in mind and in body.
We ALL have baggage. In some form. We've each carried around different shapes, different colors, different varieties of baggage and somewhere along the line we've lost a bag, traded a bag or "emptied the load."
Having baggage isn't the problem, it's simply how you deal with it.
In my bags I have a long, lengthy and tumultuous heartbreak. I have a piece of LA and a piece of New York. I've let friends hop in and take a ride, I've zipped them up and carried them around, then let them go when it was time. Sometimes the bags were empty, just for show- for flair. Sometimes they were heavy, they bruised my legs each time I carried them up the stairs, pressed against my thigh and sometimes, they were light as a feather.
In my bag I have carried feathers and I've carried boulders. I've appreciated when they were light but knew that if I ever had to carry something else I'd be able to, because I'd done it before and there was nothing too heavy that I wasn't able to handle.
Part of living our lives is learning that no matter how "heavy", burdensome....or inconvenient something is; it's only temporary, and part of our lesson is learning how to carry on whatever it is that we're lugging around and do it gracefully. People don't always need to know how heavy things are getting and sometimes you may need to take a rest, unzip and let some things GO.
My bags are my accessories, I'm unashamed and drag them about proudly. I mean, imagine how boring it'd be if we didn't HAVE any bags?......I like knowing I can open one up and look over it's contents, then choose whether or not I want to bring any of them out.
So tell me, what are you carrying around in YOUR "baggage"??