As I write this blog, I’m watching the rain turning our backyard into a swamp. The rain is soft but steady and the water quickly gathers into a small pond. I know that a rainfall like Harvey would flood our basement and house very quickly requiring us to evacuate. After watching so much coverage of Harvey victims with their garbage bags holding their possessions, I got to wondering what I would pack if I had to evacuate quickly. What precious items would be in my black bag?
The first thing that came to mind was the copy of my vows that I signed at my first and final professions. They define so much who I am today. Then I thought of the small collection of pictures I culled out for use at my funeral- reminders of family, my Dominican Collaborative Novitiate crowd, my good friends. (I just stuck them in the envelope with my vows.) I’d take two crosses hanging on my wall – one a resurrection cross given to me by a dear friend and the other that I received at my profession. Another much loved mentor gave me a wooden statue of Dominic that she received at her profession in 1952. I couldn’t let anything happen to a Dominic who is as old as me. I’d add a watercolor painted by another close friend. Finally I’d stick some earrings that were my mother’s and my dad’s wedding ring into my stash.
As I reflected on why I’d take these items first I realized that they all remind me of relationships and events that have shaped in some way who I am… sisters, family, and friends. They are very valuable to me and would be lost forever if destroyed. That would you take with you? What memories and relationships do you hold dear? My heart aches for all those who lost precious keepsakes in this recent flood and I pray that when the disaster is over, they can begin to gather some new mementoes.