Mom, a Small Desk, Garage Sale and the Grieving Process

Eleanor Van MeterIt’s the last day of May, the last day of my extended Memorial Day time off from work and another “first” since Mom passed away from her diseases. With every first, comes another moment to remember things from the past, with one thing leading to another. I’m sure that feeling will ease up after a year passes and I suppose everyone goes through this experience in one way or another in the grieving process. With the spring and summer months upon us, I find this feeling happening more frequently than before.

Yesterday, I had a garage sale in hopes of getting rid of some of the old and in with the new, although you won’t be able to buy much “new” with the money you might make from a garage sale! It’s no matter though, one of my goals has been to start clearing out the basement and besides, it’s good to be able to see a part of the basement that has nothing in it. Now for the other half of the basement and another garage sale in September. You can’t move on and grow in life until you start to clear out all of the old skeletons and cob webs, which is another reason to get rid of stuff.  It lightens your load and creates organization in your life. Once everything is out of the basement, after the sale, nothing goes back down, it gets thrown in the truck and brought right down to the local Goodwill or some other place that might help others in need.

garage sale 2That being said, it was about 4:30 pm. I was sitting outside just waiting until 5:00, at which time, I would start gathering everything that didn’t sell and start loading the truck. Right then a car pulls up with 2 woman and a lively little girl. The driver gets out of the car seeming to have an urgency about her. She asked me, if I by chance had a small desk? I paused for a moment, thinking, should I say anything…am I ready? You see, I did have a very small desk that I had bought for my mother when she had first come to live with me, before her dementia became obvious. She had specifically asked for a desk for her room where she could sit and write letters. I found just the thing on Craigslist and upon seeing it, I knew it was just what we needed to fit into her room comfortably. Although she didn’t use it much, that little desk meant something to me and reminded me of her. So, it sat in the basement taking up space until I felt ready to let it go.

Photos: above: (1) Mom a few weeks before Leukemia and dementia took her, Below: (2) Mom in California typing at her tiny home desk when she was still working.

mom_typewriterSo, after the long pause, I finally said to the woman, it’s your lucky day. I do just happen to have a very small desk. Would you like me to have it brought up from the basement so that you could look at it? She replied yes. We brought up the desk and it was exactly what she was looking for. She said that she had been to every garage sale in the area looking for a small desk, even going to some stores but they were much too expensive for her budget. I had a good feeling about this lady and her daughter was a little delight. I ended up selling my mother’s small desk to her for $20.00 which was much less than I had paid for it originally…like I said, I had a good feeling about her. They loaded it into her minivan, paid me and before she got into the car, she said to me, I’m starting a child care program at my house and I am trying to gather what I need on a limited budget. That was all she needed to say to make me know inside that I had made the right decision in letting the desk go. The desk had found a good home for a good cause…a match made in heaven. My mother would have approved. Sadly enough, I have no photos of the desk, which almost seems impossible but even so, it was a good day!


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