Wednesday, while I was moving at the pace of a (snail caught in a) whirlwind through the junk in my garage, I came to a halt when I reached the earliest levels of boxes. While I was working through the newer stuff, it was all mine and I could go Keep. Trash. Donate. very quickly. Until my garbage can filled because there was a lot of Trash. If it was a case of "What's that smell?" I trashed it. Or if I was holding on to these boxes of textbooks from my MBA until I was a high-powered executive who might need to know about hedges, I pitched it in the Terrain to haul away. The Goodwill people were not receptive but they did take everything off my hands and that's good enough.They also kindly unloaded all the books. That's a very good thing because I have the strength of a cooked noodle, and not a hearty noodle like linguine but more like angel hair.
I think I'd been putting it off because there was a stack of cardboard boxes that were deposited in my garage soon after my mother died. We very quickly and efficiently cleaned out her house for sale and when in doubt, moved it to my garage. I thought there was a lot out there, but when I came in to look around, I've already moved so much of it inside (and I'm gonna keep it there until Hoarders actually shows up. It helps that I didn't have much stuff of my own). All of her pots and pans are in my kitchen. Her china is in her china cabinet in my "dining" area. Her ceramic birds are in her display in my entry way and her paintings hang on the wall in my spare bedroom. The rest of that stuff in my garage had already been evaluated once, so it wasn't quite as big a job as I thought. (Still, those cardboard boxes from the shot on Thursday are all that stuff still to be finished.)
I did pretty well. And then I hit a box of books. There are many.
There's a whole box of them and if the name scribbled on front (see Peter Pan. I still write like that.) is an indication, they're all mine. And I missed my mother so very much. I wanted to tell her:
Thank you for buying me books. They've meant so much to me.
Thank you for keeping those books for me because someday you knew I would love to see them again.
Thank you for not committing justifiable homicide when I was 12. Or 13. Or really any age with a "teen" in it.
If I could do it all again, I would be better.