We started with over forty boxes of different shapes and sizes. We went through every item to see what we thought we really needed. Junk, junk, junk, junk .... gross! What is that nasty green goo coming out of that box? After several weeks, we were able to condense the boxes down to twenty two. Now we needed to figure out how to send all this sh_stuff from New York to Argentina.
We had no choice but to go through our things and pick the most important pieces of our past and throw away the rest. I was able to condense my things from two and a half boxes down to one. I think the hardest thing for me was having to scan my family pictures (which weighed too much) and then shred the original photographs. A part of me felt like I had betrayed my past by doing this but what else could I do?
I had to leave a lot of my things behind and that was rough but not as rough as having to watch my partner (who still had eight boxes) go through his things and decide what he had to leave behind. In many ways I felt as if my life really began when I met him so most of my personal effects are just that, reflections of the past ten and a half years. My partner had a lifetime in those boxes. Some of those items represented deceased family members or memories of a happier time. Watching him choose what not to bring was physically painful to me.
I'm not sure if any of you can understand this but I've jumped through hoops for him. I taught him how to drive. I showed him how to be independent. I helped him get his first job and open up a bank account. I went to bat for him when our boss unjustly terminated him and almost got myself fired in the process. I fought for his name and honor when some members of his own blood turned their backs on him because he made a choice to better his future. I gladly took the hit for anything that anyone threw at him. I moved to New York to ensure that he could pursue his dream of attending college at The New School (an opportunity that had been denied to him years before I met him). I was there for him when he went through his Cancer scare. I'd die for him and I wouldn't even hesitate. But this was something I was powerless to protect him from.
I couldn't choose what to take and what to keep for him. It tore me apart but I silently chose to step back and let him make his own choices. He got through it despite a couple of rough moments. He condensed his boxes down to two and he managed to come out of this with a smile.