Cleaning can often be one of most dreaded things an individual has to do. Oftentimes, the piles of stuff seem like too much and we just let more stuff accumulate. I know that many times I just sit on my bed and look at the collection of once folded clothes, and the books that lay strewn across my floor, and I make the decision to not even bother. But today was different. Today I was not in my room, nor was I in my house. Luckily, this was a different type of cleaning. This cleaning was special, and it held promise.
My grandma, like most grandma’s, tends to keep EVERYTHING; so when I arrived at her house to help clean out the attic, I knew I was in for a treat. I knew that I was going to uncover a little piece of my family’s history. The journey up the creaky stairs and the spiderwebs could have been done without, but as soon as my head emerged from the opening in the floor, my eyes lit up. Upon first glance this is what I saw: An old baby carriage, that most likely held my aunts and uncle, suitcases from the 1950s, old photo albums (which I’m sure held many funny pictures from the past), and lots of dust. Now I must admit, I was more excited about going through this stuff, that I forgot about the bugs and the dust. I forgot that my purpose was to clean, not to rummage.
As the day unfolded, and as the sticky air and heat made the job uncomfortable, my grandma and I did manage to get a lot of stuff done. With that said, we also took a lot of breaks, which included me learning the name of my great great grandparents, not knowing that I had a now deceased, rich great-aunt who gave all her money to cats, and a great uncle who died when he was only six months old. Throughout the whole process, I laughed at pictures of my dad when he had hair, became the owner of antiques, and saw the wedding dress my grandma was married in. But mostly I listened as my grandma explained the story behind each picture and object we uncovered.
It’s amazing what lays hidden bentath the dust. It makes me wonder how many other houses have similar situations, with just as much infortmation left to be discovered. How much history is just collecting dust? What more could we learn about oursevles if we all just took one day to look through our attics?