1. I have lived in the same town my entire life.
2. I have lived in the same house my entire life.
3. I have lived in the same room for approximately six years now.
But what does all of that mean? It means that I have been living in a self-curated museum of half-filled notebooks, film photos, fortune-cookie fortunes, receipts and memories. I have accumulated 18 years and countless layers of nostalgia, and now I must pack it all up.
Film has a special place in my heart. I have been an avid disposable camera user my entire life. I recently found a camera that had been ready to develop for almost a year now. I started taking photos on this green chunk of plastic around last July. I brought the camera into my local Walgreens, and the cashier just looked at me blankly (I suppose they aren't too common now). They sent away my camera to be developed, and I waited impatiently. About two weeks later, I picked the photos up, and felt this strong wave of nostalgia hit me. All of these people, places and things I had captured on film will soon be memories to me.
This inspired me to dig through the boxes under my bed. Soon it was one in the morning and I was surrounded by a pool of handwritten letters, stickers, valentines, pink diaries and pictures. I suppose I have always been a reminiscent person. I started collecting and saving letters, receipts, ticket stubs and postcards at around age 6. I am young, but I often indulge myself in the past. I can't help but feel a wave of emotions as I unpack these boxes, only to know that I will be packing them back up along with all of my possessions as I head off to school.
I have collected all of my surroundings: my favorites cafes; antique stores; movie theaters; beaches. I like to keep my favorite people and places close to me, and if the closest I can get to that is through crumpled notebook pages, coffee order slips, Polaroids with Sharpie dates and film negatives, then I will continue to collect these memories and add to my museum.
I am sad to be leaving some of my favorite places and memories, my childhood. But, I am ecstatic to embark on new adventures at Wayne State. I will be forever grateful for my upbringing captured in grainy film footage, notebooks lined with dramatic, adolescent poetry, gold stickers on reading logs, broken crayon drawings and pressed flowers. It's time to pack up these memories and bring a choice few along with me to school. Good bye, red-shuttered house on the hill. Hello, Wayne State University!
With much love