Choose Your Treasure

Written by Jennifer Pastiloff

I hear you. Despite my hearing loss. Or because of it, I hear you.

Clamoring up there in your head. I hear that. Fighting with your own thoughts, which use swords and knives and vicious words to win. Relying on trickery. Telling you things like, “You are fat” or “You are unlovable,” or “Because it has never happened, it never will.”

I’ve been there.

Some things will break. And there will always be a hole where the sound of wind passing through will be a loud lonely sound that I alone can hear. And that’s okay.

Listen to me. Now. You must fill that hole. Fill it with memories.

Go.

Now.

Fill it with pets, and songs your father sang you, people you love, your children, favorite songs, your first kiss.

Do this now.

And you must fill it and seal it with wet sand, bricks, mortar. Then hang a sign that says: No Vacany. That you’re full up.

Choose what fills you up rather than letting yourself be filled up with things you don’t want. You are the memory maker. The room with a view. The best seat in the house. You get to decide.

Be careful what you fill your memory hole with because sometimes, this will be the very thing that feeds you, that breathes you, that gives you life.

And sometimes it will be the other way around.

Save the good ones. Don’t let them in if they don’t belong there. Don’t treasure the dirt so much. Save the things you want to dig out when you’ve forgotten what it feels like to smile. Or to breathe.

Bury those things.

Treasure those things.

Forget the rest.

Go for the gold.

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