Piles of dirty clothes sat unsorted, collecting dust.
I stood in the middle of the cluttered room, breathing in the filthy air that I had become so used to.
I stared at that girl, barely able to recognize this person who had drowned in the mess of my room so many years before.
I decided to completely reorganize and revamp my room so that all the books, belts, and baskets were in their right place.
I had forgotten how turquoise the water had looked from our ship, but what really caught my attention, though, was my image.
I had buck teeth, short hair, and pimples covering my face.The innocent piles were growing higher and higher until they were looming monsters before my eyes. I sat with his picture, blocking out the rest of the mess around me.I was in the middle of a storm, but I sat there and studied him until I had memorized every line in his face.My shelves overflowed with containers of little odds and ends: hair bands, chapstick, matches, loose mints, coins, earring backings.I couldn't always see these things, but I knew that they were safe, nestled somewhere on a shelf.Lost items I had blocked out for years made their way back into my consciousness: my favorite yellow tank top, the picture of my mom and me on that boat in Jamaica, my baseball card collection. In a box buried under old textbooks, I found a letter that my Poppy had written me at camp. I suddenly remembered the thrill of running naked through cold sprinklers with my cousins, the spicy smell of barbecue mixing with the salty air at his beach house, and the distinct feel of his soft sweater rubbing warmly against my cheek each time he enveloped me in a hug.I had an urge to dive under my bed and uncover everything lurking in the murky depths of dust, and to climb up into the highest corners of my closet and rescue items that had been mingling with the spiders. I remembered my dad rocking me to sleep the night Poppy died, and how the tears wouldn't stop.When I opened the door to my bedroom, everything was in its usual cluttered arrangement.A plate of half-eaten pancakes sat on my desk, soggy with syrup from the morning.It consumed sweaters, stuffed animals, socks, shoes.When I occasionally did laundry, I would dig up clothes I couldn't even recall purchasing.