I wish I could take credit for this idea, but my Contemporary Literature professor last semester asked us to examine our life as a literary text–to search for symbols.
My name is Sarah Lea, which is symbolic of my love for baking, as well as a nod to my playful nature (when it comes to writing, anyway). And though I’m not generally a fan of Urban Dictionary, I rather love the definition they attributed to my name: https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Sarah-Lea
As for the things I carry, well, that always includes a tube of Revlon’s “Love is On” lipstick (symbolizing my love for anything red or retro), a pair of tweezers, and a flosser. (There will never be a hair on my chinny-chin-chin.
In the pocket of my red purse (which my husband helped me win at a “Dirty Santa” party), I keep a USB drive, which represents my love for compact, but tangible things (verses saving everything to a mysterious “cloud”). It’s why I read physical books and not e-books. It’s why I write articles for the print version of The Corsair and not for the web (unless they ask me to or shove a story I wrote for the print edition online because they “ran out of room”).
For me, there is something more permanent and prestigious about print. It cannot be edited once it’s been printed (like an online article) and it looks so much better in a scrapbook.
A brand-new suitcase, now several years old, reveals that I never have enough money to travel, but that I hope to someday. The fact that it exists at all is optimistic, which I attribute to my Pollyannish nature. For now, the case is a storage space for my out-of-season (or “when I am skinny again”) clothes, which forecasts that a trip to Iceland or Australia (or Skinnyville) won’t be happening any time soon.
So analyze (or psychoanalyze) the symbols that make up the text that is your life. You just might learn something new about yourself.