A better phrasing: “Where have I been?”
Not so much a matter of location, but of mental space. One of the side effects of reorganizing papers is rediscovering the nautilus shell, each time with a new bit of identity thread tied to your leg as you work through every whorl and chamber. The ‘me’ that was in graduate school suddenly brushes against the drawings from kindergarten, thanks to my parents’ careful saving of EVERYTHING. The ‘me’ that studied Shakespeare and typed in WordPerfect finds ads for companies that don’t exist anymore, singers who should never have gone to Nashville, tiny chipped pots from foreign lands, and carefully-framed pictures of nameless ancestors.
What matters? What needs to leave?
What can be acknowledged, thanked, and sent on its way?
Who do I get to be next?