10 October 2013


Heartbroken. There is no other way to describe my feelings following our recent estate sale. The sale itself went fine. The auction folks worked incredibly hard. And in spite of the cold, relentless rain, the crowd stayed and nearly everything sold.

Yet I am heartbroken. After spending an indescribably sad summer sorting through the stuff of our lives, I had hoped -- no, expected -- to feel relieved once the sale was over. After all, how could I feel worse than I already did? Instead, I was left with a profound sense of loss. Grief compounded and multiplied exponentially.

I watched in disbelief from inside the house, peeking out from the window of my old bedroom. My mom's beautiful treasures were spread out on tables in the back yard, hurriedly covered with plastic when the rain just wouldn't let up. They were the very artifacts of our lives, each one representing a memory. And there they were, heaped on tables, covered with rain-soaked plastic. Touched, evaluated, rejected, or purchased by people who didn't even know my mom.

Across the street, my dad's well-loved equipment and tools were piled onto four hay racks. The auction staff worked through rain and wind until everything...EVERYTHING he worked with and held in his hands was gone.

And there were his beloved tractors, the ones he worked so hard to restore, sold to the highest bidder. Yet the value of those tractors was not in the money they brought.

At the end of the day, strangers drove away with everything. The stuff of our lives went on to new homes, and a little bit of us went with each of them.
In time, I will come to accept the loss of my mom, my dad, my childhood home, and everything I let go of that day. In time, I will heal from this pain. But for now, I am heartbroken.


Sarah Coggins said...

Janet, you're in my thoughts and prayers. I wish there were magic words or actions that would take this pain away. My heart hurts just thinking of your pain. Things are just things, but those memories and what they meant to you are very real. I hope that many happy memories continue to push their way to the surface of your mind and help you smile more & more as the days move forward. Grief can be very powerful and lonely. Know that you are thought of and loved even far away in this difficult time.

Heather said...

I know what it is like to lose one parent, but not both, and not to have to part with your childhood home like this. I'm so sorry!

Janet said...

Thank you, Sarah and Heather, for your sweet comments. Indeed it is just going to take time. I know that time will allow those happy memories to suppress the sadness I feel right now.

I did not intend to be morose with this post...just needed to write what is in my heart right now.

Thanks for stopping by. HUGS to you both.

Kristina said...

I so sorry Janet. I understand your feelings. I hope that in time you'll be able to not feel so heartbroken and sad. When we let go of my mother's things, I did feel a bit of comfort that they were going to people who were going to love and enjoy them.

Anonymous said...

It's so hard, isn't it, losing your dear parents? It's like every time I gave away their things, I felt like I lost another connection to them. But I came to realize that no matter what happened to their things, I would never lose THEM. Their love and memories still fill my heart and that can never be taken away. My parents passed away 20 years ago, and I still miss them every day. Most times I can think of them and be happy, but I still feel grief sometimes.

I can tell how much you love your parents. How proud they must have been of you.