In the covered up bin at the bottom of this neatly folded pile are several linens that have always been “too good” for me to use or saved for a special occasion. I can’t quite part with them and I can’t bear the thought of ruining them through use. I know there are pieces that a great-grandmother hand stitched and some Senegalese dyed cotton floating or pressed in there somewhere. Always saving them for later.
In reading about memory hoarding today, I found the ocdreflections blog in which the author expounds on her process of coming to the present. She (or maybe he?) writes, “I am constantly waiting for the future, and yet the future nears, arrives, and then passes me by and I am still standing there waiting in vain for it to suddenly appear.”
Too many of my items are “saved for later,” and it is true that later almost never comes. Ocdreflections explains her delayed gratification, “I’m hoarding up life’s moments to make sure I have what I want in the future, but the future keeps coming, and instead of taking pleasure in it as it occurs, I am still too busy planning for an even more distant future to enjoy the moment at that time.”
The future is ever displaced and slips behind us before we can embrace it. My type of saving for later does not have nefarious effects on my lifestyle, but too often the saved up goodies become destroyed before they are ready to be used. This has been happening since my first grade attempt to hoard candy for a “party” celebrated with my brother and best friend with stale sweets until yesterday when I uncorked two bottles of very good wine that were growing moldy on the outside. Fortunately the contents were still good enough to give thanks.