I've just returned to Los Angeles from my high school reunion in Denver. I spent a truly wonderful long weekend with friends, reminiscing about the past and catching up on current news. Some classmates I hadn't seen for far too many years, but the passage of time didn't matter once we were together. We were like kids again, delighted to be with each other and eager to enjoy our brief celebration.
No one talked about their cars or houses or antiques. No one flashed expensive jewelry or designer clothing to impress anyone else. "Stuff" was meaningless at this gathering. We talked about our families and careers, the joys of our lives and, on occasion, the challenges and the losses. We saw each other through the caring eyes of experience, sometimes with a little sympathy and understanding, often with admiration and respect. It was an example of true communion.
The weekend reminded me of the real meaning of the word "treasure:" 1. accumulated wealth; 2. something greatly valued.
If I had to trade all of my possessions in order to keep the friendship and love of the people I care about, I'd let everything go without a moment's hesitation. Possessions are just "stuff." The accumulated memories, the greatly valued feelings, the people are what matter.
© 2006 Cynthia Friedlob