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Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Suitcase

The suitcase can arouse a very broad range of emotions. Some times the sight of a suitcase can be a happy exciting thing. You can imagine the face of an eight year old who was just surprised with a family trip to Disney World. Mouth smiling, eyes glowing and grinning as the packed suitcase is wheeled out to the front room.

Quite often the suitcase is a sickening thing to see. The stomach turning fiercely as it is carried away from you. The back of a soldier, going overseas to places not safe, holding the handle as it is taken on to a plane.

Then, the exact same suitcase, when being carried toward you, in what seems a moment that lasts forever, is a suitcase of miracles. The soldier returning home, finally, safely.

The suitcase has very strange powers over us. It can raise us up with wonderful emotions and crash us down in despair. It is our lifeline and our dread all at once. It can mean closeness and separation both at the same time.

I love packing my suitcase, but hate unpacking it. Packing my suitcase means, most likely, that I am getting to go somewhere fun. I am getting to go see people I love. Unpacking it means that I have left them behind and won't see them again for a long time. Packing is fun, unpacking is sad.

My suitcase has never been anywhere exciting. It has never been to Jamaica, or Europe, or even New York City. It has never been on an airplane, a cruise ship, or in a five star hotel. It has yet to be taken to the ocean, or the grand canyon. It is not a well seasoned traveling suitcase.

Where my suitcase does go, is home. Home, where we get to see the kids, where we get to see Kahlen, where we get to see friends and family. My suitcase, it may long to go on adventures, but it is never happier than when it is home.

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