Letting Go

This entry is part 14 of 16 in the series Issue VI: Fall 2010

by Hunter Demos

Why do we save all these “things” ? They must have an emotional pull way beyond their “thingness”. Maybe we should ask instead “Why don’t we throw those things away?” Perhaps it is the dynamic in the act of saving that should explored.

My children’s bunk beds for instance, I think the two boys had long graduated from college and those beds still took up space in my walk-in closet. One day I finally decided it was time for them to go. And yes on the second and third days I felt it was time.

On the fourth day I took action. It was a hot day and the beds were heavy and unwieldy as I struggled to manipulate them out of the closet and into the common hallway of my apartment building. I left them leaning against the wall as I sat down to rest and think.

“No” I thought “It isn’t time to let them go yet”. Once again I began the struggle, this time maneuvering them back into the space they had inhabited for such a long time. I closed the closet door and was at piece with my decision.

But then on the fifth day, I doubted the very decision I had been at peace with on the day before. I returned to the closet to wrestle with those beds again. I dragged them out into the hall and this time made my way with them to the elevator and was on my way down to the storage room where so many unwanted items from various apartments went before being claimed for a another home.

Back in the apartment, I threw open the closet door and one after another ideas flew into my head of what could be done with the now empty space. The heat and my fatigue were no hindrance as I pulled boxes down from high shelves, dragged a heavy chest to a new position and hung a selection of old -time fashion prints.

I lost track of time and soon the space was transformed into the sewing room I had always imagined where bolts of colorful fabrics were neatly stacked one on top of another. My button collection was now artfully displayed to its best advantage and the vintage sewing machine had pride of place on the shelf beside them.

All that tortured decision making helped me to move on to a long held dream.

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