Through the looking glass, we watched families pile as many memories into their SUV's as they could. Blazing fire loomed above them, around them. Tired firefighters, running on adrenaline, go door to door to warn them, "Get out! Evacuate!" I tried to imagine what was going through those families' minds in that moment. Survival. Kids. Insurance. Home. Momentos. Run. Protect. NOW. For the lucky few, there was enough warning to grab a few things. But what?
How does one decide in minutes which thing to save? Where does one even begin to differentiate between important and necessary?
I walked through my home last night, pondering this conundrum. There were obvious things that are just stuff. Wall pretties. Furniture. Toys. Clothes. Appliances. Those can all be replaced. I thought deeper...baby pictures, baby books, journals, hand prints, my mother's Bible, our wedding video. Yes. These are all things that I would truly mourn over if lost.
Of course, there are things that leaving them would be just downright irresponsible. That's when marrying a responsible person would come in handy. While I'm stripping pictures off the walls and breaking my back trying to push my mother's cedar chest out the door, Shea would no doubt be loading the safe and the filing cabinets which contain our marriage license, the deed to our house, statements, insurance policies, and military documents. And he'd probably also be yelling at me for help.
Is either group of stuff more important than the other? Well, I hope I never have to answer that question. In the game of life, though, it's sobering to stop and think about what's really important. Even if all was lost. If we had zero time to grab stuff. If all we left our house with were the clothes we had on and our two beautiful kids, then I would be elated that we still had each other. All the other stuff, the stuff that we insist we need to be happy, the TVs, the games, the toys, the cars, the furnishings, the clothes...it all pales in comparison to the irreplaceable, perfect, funny, lovable, living little monsters that I call mine.