Wednesday, April 26, 2017

The things that affect our lives: Pom-poms vs Race medals

Recently Scott and I started doing some Spring cleaning. We are really trying to down size, maximize our space in our house, and get organized. We no longer want to feel obligated to keep things because they were given to us by friends or family members if those things aren’t “useful”.  Which can be hard to do because I know I feel guilty getting rid of things. I am NOT a hoarder but I tend to hang on to things for sentimental reasons.


We came across some bins that we probably hadn’t opened up since we moved into our house over 10 years ago.  In those bins were old yearbooks from both High School and College, old trophies, and a few old photo albums of mine that were mostly pictures of school friends from High School and college, and memorabilia from High School, and college, and sorority stuff.

I will tell you that I had no problem tossing this stuff. The old Sorority paddle, it went in the trash. All the High School newspapers that I wrote for, gone. I even tossed my Varsity Letters from High School.  Now mind you, they were only from Cheerleading, but they went in the trash.

 Scott pulled them back out and said “You can’t throw away your varsity letters. You earned these”.  I looked at him and said “Cheerleading did not change my life and it’s not like I will be displaying them on the wall. They can go.”  He put them back in the trash and reminded me that I’m throwing these letters away which I earned but yet I was keeping a Beverly Hills 90210 book I’ve had since High School…lol. Yes, I may have issues. But come on, 90210 was THE show back in the day, right?
I would have probably got rid of my Yearbooks too but that kind of seems like something we should keep out of obligation.




Anyway,  the next day when I walked into my dressing room, I looked at all the race medals I have hanging on my wall and wondered will there come a day when I think these are all just things?  Will I look at them as things that no longer have meaning? Will they be things that no longer have any sentimental value? Will they be things that have not affected my life in any way?

 Of course they mean something NOW but will they mean something in 10 or 20 years from now?  This I don’t know.  However, I can say that unlike cheerleading, the races I’ve done HAVE affected my life.  I know that I can accomplish hard things (like really hard things), I have become more determined and dedicated to tasks, I’ve learned to love the outdoors, I’ve got to experience some really cool places and events, I’ve got to spend meaningful time with family, and have built friendships that will hopefully last a lifetime.

Although I am not doing as many races as I use to, and I’m sure I’ll even slow down more as I get older, I think I’d view these races and medals as a part of my adult life and always look at them with a sense of pride and happiness. I could never imagine tossing my marathon medal in the trash. But if I do, I am glad to know that I will have Scott there to dig it out! 


What are your thoughts? -M

22 comments:

  1. I had the same thought recently, but it wasn't so much a question as a sad realization. I AM over my medals in a lot of ways. I don't need them to remember my races, and many of the races I got medals for weren't special in any particular way. I don't know if it's because I'm racing less frequently now or because I've just outgrown that stage of my running.

    I do have trouble parting with old stuff, like I posted about just a little while ago. Old letters, photos, journals, etc...I don't plan to have kids so it's not like I'm planning to share these things with my progeny or anything. I rarely look at them myself. I just like having them around!

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    1. I guess it all boils down to what means something to you or what has value to you. I am the same way about letters and cards when they come from people I love. I guess I have no sentimental connection with high school stuff so that's easier to let go. Right now I still care about my medals mostly because I valued the experiences that earned them!

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  2. I think those same things about my medals. I'm sure I'll keep them. I wonder who'll care about them when I'm dead?! A friend of mine ran Boston 5x so she'd have a medal for herself, her husband and each of her kids. Now that hadn't occurred to me!

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    1. That is sad to think about what will happen to all the things we hold dear when we are gone.

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  3. I've had the same thoughts about my medals. That's why I'm not a bling hog--what am I going to do with all that stuff?

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    1. I've actually been more selective about my races lately because I'm running out of room to display all the medals..lol

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  4. I'm the same as you..I don't really have sentimental connections to objects so it's easy for me to throw old stuff away. Dan's the opposite and keeps EVERYTHING. Drives me nuts!

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    1. It depends on what it is. I admit I've saved some silly stuff!

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  5. That's an interesting comparison you're making, but one definitely worth considering. I too have trouble parting with things that represent things that were once an important part of my life, but maybe aren't as significant now. Its hard to imagine me having this debate about my medals, as running is currently an important part of my life, and seeing my medals on display is a great reminder of all that I've accomplished.

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  6. Its funny you are talking about this - this has been on my mind for the past few weeks. Mainly because I have a hunk of my closet full of totes of teen stuff - I think I'm ready to toss so much of it for space in my closet!!! ... & I was thinking what will happen to my medals one day. Do they matter to anyone after I die? Will they end up in the garbage. Kinda sad really. I actually took down some of the medals I had for races that didnt really matter to me - I just kept up my special medals & races & boxed up some others. I think I'm having a phase of GET RID OF EVERYTHING... but you work so hard for those medals. Gotta hang on to them... at least for now ;)

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    1. I actually don't display medals for virtual races and I've often thought of removing my "challenge" medals to give me more room for the actual race medals.

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  7. Like you, I could NEVER at this time, throw away a medal I earned. I don't even like my kids playing with them. Maybe it's my OCD? Other stuff like you're talking about? I have th totes too - they are in the garage attic - collecting dust. Maybe someday they will be unearthed to look at.

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  8. My parents have kept stuff, so I let them keep them. I have had a wall for my athletic achievements since I can hang it all, but I didn't use all the pictures. My varsity letter is framed, so I can hang that across from my race medals, and I'll hang my high school plaque with the varsity letter. Everything else is boxed up at my parents' house.

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  9. hmmm, now you have me thinking! All the medals, should I leave them in the will to someone? Should they be obligated to store them in a box for infinity? thinking..........

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  10. I like my medals, but it's funny, the couple that I have very little attachment to came from virtual races/runs, so maybe I appreciate the entire race experience that comes with the medal more? I'm getting pretty good about culling out saved items, because one of these days we're going to move and I know I'll hate myself if I have to box up all the mementos that I have.

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  11. Just want to let you know your not the only one who's kept a 90210 book. I have one and a Luke Perry one that I know are still in my memorabilia closet lol. (Now I know more why I like you) lol
    I keep some awards from high school but I don't display them. I've said this before but I only display my 26.2 medals. The rest from shorter distances are just clutter (to me only) and don't have as much meaning. Although the few (very few) that I took first place in even if they are a 5k they make the display. The rest are sitting in a tote, not sure what I'll do with them probably donate them to special needs awards one day...who knows.

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  12. 90210 book all the way!! LOL! Best show ever.

    I am with you about the race medals. I never unpacked the medals I earned before we moved here to California. And the ones I've earned since living here are hung up, but not in any meaningful way. I feel like I should display them but don't know where or how to do so. I'd also like to think they're interesting (or something?) to my kids and maybe they will be inspired by them in some way. This is definitely food for thought!

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  13. Have you read The Life Changing Magic of Tiding up? It helped me get rid of some things, but I still have lots of things to get rid of, but it gave me a start that I didn't have before.

    I have told my sisters, and Roger that if anything happens to me, or when I die, to donate my medals to a Cancer Organization. I need to give them the name and information, but if anything was to happen to me suddenly, at least they know what to do. I asked that my race shirts be donated, and that my bibs are saved for my son. My bibs mean more to me than my medals.

    Please excuse my ignorance, but what are Varsity letters? I didn't know you were a cheerleader! that is way cool!!

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    1. I believe each school might do "Varsity letters" differently because Scott's are not the same as mine since we went to different schools. For each year you participate in a Varsity sport, you get a "letter" in my case the letters were plaques with the initials of my school, my name, and sport.

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  14. I sometimes wonder at what point I'll no longer display my medals - when I get married, when I have kids and need more space.

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  15. Interesting thoughts! I never looked at it in that way, although I do still have my letterman jacket hanging in the extra closet

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Fairytales and Fitness is a personal blog authored and edited by us, Meranda and Lacey. The thoughts expressed here represent only our own and are not meant to be taken as professional advice. Please note that our thoughts and opinions change from time to time. We consider this a necessary consequence of having an open mind in an ever changing society. Any thoughts and opinions expressed within our out-of-date posts may not be the same, nor even similar, to those we may express today.