Cleaning is an activity which forces me to look at life as a big picture. Whatever it is that I’m cleaning, I always have to make the choice about what stays and what goes. My philosophy is that I can’t keep everything and I am much more productive and happy once I have only a few things. It’s hard. Cleaning means I look through my old receipts from freshman year which bring back great memories. I see a receipt for the Nightmare Before Christmas that I bought for my sister, receipts from the purchase of my first computer, mouse, keyboard, memory cards, camera and carrying cases. I remember getting my car inspected, buying new balance shoes once a year, depositing money from my job at CVS and ordering books, dozens and dozens of books. I have receipts from when I first came to college: one from when I bought my P.O. Box, one from the fan my mom and I bought from Bed Bath and Beyond, one from when I opened my First Citizens Bank account and even one from the Campbell Business Office.
Exploring one’s past is almost always a very pleasant experience, allowing us to be reassured of our worth, reminded of our experiences and provided hope for the future. It’s hard to throw things away, but moving on is at the heart of change. To have our recent experiences, we had to let go of our beginnings, our comfort and our certainty. Certainly to have our future adventures, we must let go of what is comfortable for us now. Like Calvin said to Hobbes in their last comic together: