Z has a bedroom full of her life’s possessions in boxes and bags and scattered on the floor. Most things were boxed up for college. It is still a disaster in there. When I brought her things home I opened her bedroom door, put the boxes on the floor, and then left. I didn’t even leave myself a path in her bedroom. In order to get in I have to big step over boxes and piles and bags.
I have to step over all of the things she thought were important. Her things trip me up.
I needed a new laundry hamper for my room. The old plastic hamper had started to give my clean clothes static and I was basically wasting money on laundry sheets. Everything I touched shocked and stuck to me.
Prepping for college, she had purchased for herself a new hamper made primarily of canvas. It was exactly what I needed, so I braved the trip into her room and took it. I removed the tags and employed it for my own use.
Since she’s been gone, I’ve had a problem that mostly feels like I’m invading her privacy. She was nearly 19 and she had a right to her secrets and she is allowed to have her own things. She purchased that hamper with her money, not mine.
The hamper was hers and I took it. I took it from her and used it my room for my clothes. She never got the chance to use it for her things.
It was a test drive for me. I know I’ll have to dive into her room to sort out the boxes and bags. I look at that chore looming ahead of me and I dread the next step to close out her life. Her physical life. Her things and stuff and treasures and necessities.
I take her laundry hamper and put my toe into a pond I don’t want to swim in.
It’s just a hamper. It’s just things. They are not her. I am not giving her away or stealing her life. She will not be mad. She won’t complain. She has not misplaced anything. She won’t ever notice anything is missing from her room. She won’t demand answers for the whereabouts and locations of her life.
Her things are just things now. They aren’t hers. They aren’t really mine, either.
0 stars. Would not recommend.
Laura your writing skills are amazing. Although I didn’t know Z you need to know that what you are writing helps me deal with my personal losses of family – also too soon. A fun-loving brother at 40. A free spirit sister at 45. Many instances my husband and I look at each other when our very handy son age 26 does something skillful that surprises us and we both say it is too bad he didn’t know his Uncle Bill. They have a lot in common. My prayers and thoughts are with you b
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It’s a hard thing to do, this dealing with the remains of our child’s life. Not long after Jason died, I needed a graphing calculator for a class I was taking. Hugs to you as you walk this path.
Exactly. Calculators, laundry hampers. Ugh. Hugs back.
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