Saturday, Cara spent most of the day sorting through her bedroom. She's got a lot of stuff. She's always been a packrat. She says it is my fault. I kept a memory box for them, things from their childhood, pictures, clippings, momentos, report cards, the like. Cara's got several memory boxes of her own, boxes with notes to herself from when she was in the fourth grade, for example. She found letters she'd written but not sent. Toys. A pencil her fiance had used to do magic tricks with in gradeschool. (Yes. She was afianced very young. To this day, the boy introduces her as his first wife.) She moved enough stuff to get her bedroom furniture out, and we did so, driving it up, and setting up her bedroom here as she continued sorting through her things.
It's a lot of stuff, even though she's thrown a lot of stuff out. It got to the point where she was holding a broken object in her hand, and smiling at of the memory invoked. A very rational voice inside her snapped, "It's broken, for pete's sake!" She shut her eyes, and threw it out.
She woke up with a cold over the weekend. She went to the drugstore to buy cold medicine. It is now kept behind the counter. She asked for cold medicine, and the cashier reached behind her to grab a box from the shelf. It was brand name. Cara said, "Wait. How much is that?" The cashier told her that she would not know until she rang it up. She rang it up and said, "$30." Cara said, "I need something cheaper, please. Generic." The cashier got quite huffy that she "would have to call the manager to do a void." The manager was quite huffy too. Explained that she would have to take more of the cheap pills to do the same thing. Cara is her mother's child. She said, "I'd rather take four pills that would cost me a dime each than one pill that will cost me a dollar."
The girl is back to school now, but over the weekend, I have rediscovered the jumbled up mixture of practicality and emotions that is our Cara, and I see myself a bit more clearly.