13 Nov 2010
For all you collectors out there, I just broke my grandmother’s blue and white Spode dish, one of the very few things I had left of hers. Having had a wonderful relationship with my grandmother, surprisingly I was upset for only a few seconds. The shattered pieces were left on the kitchen counter until my husband got home so he could assist me with the proper burial.
I was fortunate to be at my grandmother’s side when she died peacefully in the Alzheimer’s wing of a beautiful community. During one of my early visits to see her, I noticed a little ceramic Siamese cat, a precious reminder of her beloved pet. With a child’s eyes, I treasured the memories of her beautiful home and even that cat. And then it dawned on me, is this all that is left?
It is hard to explain but somehow those few moments with my grandmother gave me a new clarity regarding my relationship with my material possessions. Later, at home with fresh eyes, I surveyed the lifetime of treasures I had collected. My heart lightened as I sensed a feeling of freedom. Laughing, I thought: what will I be taking to my final home? Then I decided to start a new collection. Any guesses on what I’m collecting now? That’s right, I’m collecting family and friends because I decided the more important question to ask is: who will visit me at my final home?
Lisa Stewart is an Interior Designer in Raleigh, NC.