It’s probably not a large number compared to what others have, but somewhere between Newark and LAX I decided to use my time wisely by deleting as many of my 1,700 pictures as possible. I guess you could call it a premature spring cleaning.
The great thing about the iPhone, even though I took forever to warm up to it, is that — whenever the moment grabs me — I can capture anything I want to save and remember. Most of my pictures are of travel and tiny details — clouds mid-country, sunsets, changing light, the landscape, towns lit up at night, plants, trees, and there were many of raindrops on hotel windows with a foggy, gray cityscape for a backdrop. Apparently I travel during inclement weather more often than I realized.
If the photo reminded me of more than simply the destination and a meeting I attended, I saved it. If it didn’t, it was deleted. I deleted one-third of my stash.
I think we do the same thing to other people. We filter, and sometimes we do it without even realizing what we’re up to. Good memories, people get to stick around. Mediocre, then sticking around is a big if. If we don’t like the way we feel around someone or the person we become, the plug gets pulled — usually without an explanation. At least that’s how I operate. There may be better ways to handle things, but that’s one of my truths, for better or for worse. I prefer to think of it as self-preservation; it’s protection, in one of its purest forms.
You can cram a lot into an iPhone. I’m sure I wasn’t in any danger of filling up my space for photos, but why keep the unnecessary around? Save the best and cash in on those memories when things get a little bleak, when you just need a lift or when you feel your road getting a bit bumpy. Same goes for life. We can accept a lot, we can take a lot, and we can put up with a lot — but why? So much of it is garbage, a waste. And for what?
Tonight I am thankful for my iPhone (never thought I’d say that) and its hidden truth. We can accumulate a lot as we travel our path, but the road is long and it’s only so wide. Here’s to making the journey as full of good memories as possible.