The little box with the big meaning….

By Haven Lindsey  in  blog  on  05.01.2014


It seems that despite the monetary value, brand or status of an item the things that hold the most meaning to us are the things that have a story. A story can give an inanimate object significance which results in that item having value. We all have things that are meaningless to some and valuable to us. The old, faded, dog collars I have draped over Tua and Alta’s picture are precious to me. Tua wore purple, Alta wore red and when each dog died I removed her collar and kept it.

We can also experience allowing a story to unfold which can result in something holding meaning for us. That happened to me with the pretty little box with the peacock on the front.

I had gone through, by any standard, a difficult few years. The young man who I loved and mentored was killed in Afghanistan at the age of 24. Tua, my beautiful Alaskan husky died not long after that and Alta, my Siberian husky, died two years later. I had also discovered that my best friend and financial advisor husband of nearly 18 years had embezzled from me and had done so on such a grand scale my life savings were gone. That resulted in losing the ability to stay enrolled in graduate school in which I had excelled. I dissolved the marriage which resulted in more loss. In that same time, my father, with whom I was not close but loved, died.

During that time I suffered and grieved and I grew and evolved. I didn’t hide from my pain and I didn’t attempt to deny or replace it with something or someone else. I wanted to heal and prosper.
I love the line from Andy Rooney the 60 Minutes curmudgeon,

                               ‘everyone wants to live on top of the mountain,
                              but happiness and growth occur while climbing it’

So I climbed and climbed and along the way I found my new hometown. It was love at first visit but I didn’t allow myself to fall so easily. I didn’t want to run away and simply cover up the previous years’ pain yet it became increasingly apparent that I was heading to a place in which I seemed destined. I researched the area, I poked around and visited during all times and weather. I sat in traffic and I sat by the lake, I went out with new friends and danced at a honky tonk. I made friends and I felt at home. I drove outside the city to explore what was beyond and that’s when I saw the little box.

I had already made the decision to move to Austin when I walked through a small shop in a quaint little town and the pretty little box caught my eye. About the size of a 5 x 7″ frame, it held no meaning. It was a little empty box. But I kept going back to it – there was something about the box decorated in bright colors with a peacock on the front. As the salesperson rang it up she asked if I would like it wrapped. I knew immediately I would take the gift-wrapped box home and open it in my new home in Austin, whenever that might be. I put the little box away and remembered it was there but had forgotten what it looked like.

Recently as I was unpacking and settling in, I discovered the gift-wrapped box. I unwrapped it with anticipation knowing it had been many months since I had seen it. I opened the box and laughed for it had a peacock on the front. Unbeknownst to me then I had purchased the little box decorated with a bird with a rich, symbolic history. Depending on the culture, country and religion there are many interpretations to the significance of the brilliantly colored bird yet they all agree the peacock represents rebirth, renewal and integrity.

While traveling just one month prior to moving, I learned about the peacock, it’s symbolism and it’s predisposition for growth and renewal. When I opened the pretty little box in my new home, it immediately became valuable, because it had a story. I had been compelled to buy and wrap something empty and insignificant yet when I opened it many months later, the little empty box was full of meaning.

Thanks for reading,
~ Haven

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