Memory Keeper

Ellie, left, and a friend at the One Direction concert, 2013

My latest essay, on the link between memories and stuff, is up today at Motherwell.

(And if you’re not reading Motherwell yet, well, you should. You can follow them on Facebook or Instagram, or sign up for their newsletter here.)

Thanks for reading, commenting and sharing!


In my family, I am both the closet cleaner and the memory keeper, the one who decides what stays and what goes—Are we keeping this notebook? Can I toss this Barbie shoe? What are we doing about the Lego? And I’m good at it: I can whittle down a sock drawer or toy basket with the best of them. But I am also the person who remembers things, like which painting my daughter Ellie had in the first grade art show (the one of the flower vase) and where I’ve stored the gown both boys wore at their bris ceremonies (oh no, wait—now I remember only Sam wore it because when Oliver was born I couldn’t find it and he borrowed his cousin’s). At times, it is an uneasy alliance because while I am the one who tosses things—there are only so many science journals or Mother’s Day cards a person can save without ending up on Hoarders—I know that in the act of discarding, something else always gets lost.

Read the rest here!