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12.5 years.... Letting her stuff go....
Posted: Saturday, September 18, 2021 9:41 AM
Joined: 12/14/2011
Posts: 451

Mom has now been gone twelve and a half years. A couple days ago I went to her room and began  bagging and boxing her things. I drove 9 large bags of clothes and multiple boxes to the salvation army.  It was roughly a third of her clothes so I still have work to do.

It was painless. But even now, all these years later as I folded her clothes memories of her came flooding back...when I first moved her to AL without thinking I had taken some dry clean only outfits.. Staff put them through the wash... wrinkled and shrank....they were ruined .. My bad.. Obviously I should have known better... Just one of those things I never had enter my mind...

Over the years I would think of emptying her room.. Try to sometimes... Say I was going to.. When the weather got warmer or some other excuse...didn't happen.... ..but now, now was simply the time... 

The only loss was slacks...Every pair of certain brands had the elastic rot over the years.. Garbage now... But other ones were still like new.. Who knew....

Her collectables, most no longer collectable.... I remember how much She loved them.. And my hope is someone like her finds them and is happy to have them...

She would like it if someone gets some use from her things.... And the salvation army, I chose it because she had set up a charitable remainder trust for them so I know they valued them.. Something about being in I think France during ww2 and the SA being there with hot coffee... Somethings you never forget....

So since y'all listened to me stress over trying to empty her room, feeling guilt like I should have done it sooner.. Not understanding why I couldn't, just thought I'd post here that it just wasn't time till now... I think we each have our own internal time table... And it's ok to wait till it's time...


Posted: Sunday, September 19, 2021 10:24 PM
Joined: 6/12/2016
Posts: 2477

Hi Shardy. Thank you for sharing this with us. I agree that we each have our own internal clock.   You made good progress. Please let us know how you make out.
Posted: Friday, September 24, 2021 6:27 PM
Joined: 4/1/2014
Posts: 5213

Hi,  it's nice of you to share. I divided mom's things with siblings right after mom died, but I have not touch the stuff I got yet. It's been almost 2 years. The time hasn't come for me yet, but it's good to know that that time will come Best to you!
Posted: Saturday, September 25, 2021 5:15 PM
Joined: 12/4/2011
Posts: 21244

Today my husband's closet is dleaned out and empty except for his flight bag with his ashes. I will start putting my clothes in tomorrow. I may move his ashes downstairs to the library....not certain that I want him that far away....sometimes late at night I just like knowing he is in the bedroom with me.
Posted: Sunday, September 26, 2021 10:44 AM
Joined: 1/23/2017
Posts: 1327

I feel sort of like a traitor here, after reading these other posts. When Barbara died last December, I started going through her things almost immediately.

Maybe it's because throughout most of our 38 years together, she was an incurable thrift store shopper. The bulk of her wardrobe came from thrift stores, as did most of my tee shirts. She could spend hours combing through the racks, searching for those things that would fit just right.

During the years after her retirement, but before she developed her dementia symptoms, I would try to convince her that those clothes that had given her such pleasure could now be passed on to others who needed a wardrobe but couldn't afford the high cost of new clothing.

After she passed, it just seemed to make sense to donate, donate, donate, knowing there would be a little bit of her in every piece that someone else wore.

I now have happy memories when I see my own clothes in the closet, because I know that her clothes are being worn by others.

She doesn't need them now. They do.