There’s a reason I buy two pairs of (cheap) sunglasses at a time.  At least once or twice a week, I will lose the pair I’m currently wearing. As a mom, and a teacher, I’m often worried about caring for others and therefore, forget my own things all.the.time. I leave them in the car, on the dining room table, on my nightstand or dresser, or even on my head (…yes, this has happened.) Sometimes I find them, and if I don’t, the spare pair is kept in the car.  Then when I have to put those on, and accidentally bring them upstairs and lose them too, the whole process starts all over again.  But I digress…

It was one of these times, when looking for my beloved sunglasses in the nooks and crannies of our learning center that I found something else — a gold-trimmed, leather-bound diary.  It was hiding near the front door, behind the tall potted plant that we sometimes use to prop the door open for some fresh air. Our students often sit at the small, round table there, so I wondered if someone had dropped it while they were waiting for help.  There was no name on the outside, so if I wanted to return it to its owner (and I did) I was going to have to commit a cardinal sin and open it up in hopes that the person had put their name somewhere.  Even though, putting your name inside a diary is not the smartest thing to do, since it’s your private thoughts, and mostly you don’t want anyone else reading them or attributing them to you.  I had a similar one when I was in middle school, and I recalled writing on the inside “If anyone touches this, you will DIE!” – it didn’t have a lock, so I had to do something to deter prying eyes. I also wrote my name in it – not sure what that says about me…

Thankfully, this diary’s owner was not as melodramatic. On the inside front cover, written in the tiniest writing imaginable were two words — “all mine.”  No name, no entries as of yet.  Just two little words. Something somebody treasured enough to claim as theirs, but they perhaps were not quite brave enough to fill up with their private musings.  I have to admit, I was disappointed and sad. Not because there wasn’t anything juicy to read, but because whomever had taken the time to bring this tiny tome with them to school, would now be bereft of the chance to use it as an outlet.  I suspected to whom it might belong, but didn’t want to embarrass the person by seeking them out, so I decided to create a lost and found box, let the other teachers know about it so they could tell their students, and hope that this student took the bait to get their lost item back. And if they didn’t, perhaps someone else would make use of the empty pages and make it all theirs.

The nice thing about things lost and found is that what’s lost for one, can be a blessing for another.  A forgotten jacket on a warm day for one can be an extra layer on a cold day for another.  An empty notebook discarded by a photographer one day can be the empty canvas for a budding writer on another.

A once lively, turned stagnant relationship with a spouse enables a vibrant relationship with one’s self. In this case, the loss and discovery were two sides of the same coin.  A loss and a blessing.  With these types, it’s harder to see, especially in the beginning, but it’s there, waiting to be found.

 

Note: This is a follow-up to the first two posts in the series from Day 4 and Day 13. The prompt was as follows – Imagine you had a job in which you had to sift through forgotten or lost belongings. Describe a day in which you come upon something peculiar, or tell a story about something interesting you find in a pile. If you’d like to continue our serial challenge, also reflect on the theme of “lost and found” more generally in this post.