All my sorrows…

“Yesterday, all my sorrows seemed so far away.” The words of the Beatles song echoed in my head as I drove away from our house which may prove to be the last time I’ll ever see it.

Walking into the door yesterday morning with my dear son Greg to finally witness what was left after the fourth and final day of the estate sale was heartbreaking.  

My comfy chair, the chair from which I wrote every word of this blog (except for the past 10 days), the chair where I laughed, the chair where I cried, the chair where I lived, and the chair where I sat, and on occasion suffered Life’s challenges and sorrows.  The chair.  It sat in the dumpster.

No one bought my perfect condition, mauve colored velvet, definitely outdated, Flexsteel recliner chair, surely overpriced at my insistence of $100, more appropriately priced at $24.  And now, it sits in a dumpster.

Goodwill,  the Vets, and the thrift store, all turned it down. I offered it to son Greg. Not interested. No room. I offered it to dear friend and neighbor Jamie. Not interested. No room.  

Goodbye chair. Goodbye chair. And the chair represented it all, letting go of that life, of that time, of that house.

The estate sale people’s cars were scattered about the lawn as they carried lifted and hauled the remnants of our lives outside to go into one of two trucks and then the dreaded dumpster. They worked so hard.

A number of items didn’t sell including our 1902 Baker Rhodes player piano and all the music roles that go with. Not an offer. Anyone want it?  Pay to have it removed by tomorrow afternoon ($250) and its yours. The Italian leather down filled sectional.  I had an offer that I refused for $350.  Maybe I should have taken it. 

The 10′ long hand made table crafted from wood in our yard in 1923 by a craftsman from Dayton’s, all made with wooden screws with six chairs will be picked up today to go to a consignment store.  Thanks to friend Jamie, who lovingly coordinated it all for us.  Thank you Jamie.

The money?  Not one-sixth of what we had hoped for, a mere pittance for our lives, the quality we demanded, the unique design we sought, now all lost to the whims of a terrible economy, conservative buyers in tough economic times.  We never counted on any return from the sale into our travel budget.  Good thing.

The five estate sale people worked so hard.  They cleaned, they scrubbed, they vacuumed, they washed everything in site.  It looks nice for the new people. When I returned in the afternoon to pick up the cable boxes, they were still there, almost done.  It looked great.  Thank you, Jason, Nadine, Jessica, and all. You worked so hard.

Tom quit smoking yesterday.  I took his car to have it detailed, free from smoke residue, making the drive to Scottsdale more pleasant for me beginning tomorrow, Halloween, the final day in the month’s long countdown.  Between son Greg and dear friend Chere, I had transportation during the four hour period the carwash had Tom’s car.

Chere and I spent three hours together yesterday, working out, having lunch, running errands and commiserating over the years we have known each other while wishing that Life would have allowed us more time together.  What is more important than love and friendship?  Sitting in the newly cleaned car, I cried when we said goodbye. 

Finally, back in Tom’s car, now alone, I returned the cable boxes only to discover that I was two boxes short.  I found one in Greg and daughter-in-law Camille’s SUV (which Tom drove to work yesterday).  Today I have to go back to the house one more time to look for the missing cable box.   Ouch!

Besides, I need to walk around the yard and say goodbye to our three pups buried in the yard.  How did I forget?  Bart, run over by the mailman at five, BenBenBen, died from Cushing’s Disease at 12.  And them my WorldWideWillie who passed away 18 months ago from cancer.  

I wrote a blog for Willie during the last 17 days of his life, from his perspective, a real tear jerker that helped me heal. We had over 500 followers.  How did they find it? They came from all over the world. They cried with me. We named this blog in part for Willie…worldwide…

More goodbyes today, the road tomorrow.  I’ll write along the way relieved that this sad part is behind us, finally allowing ourselves to experience the joy of the adventure that lay ahead and… “all my sorrows seemed so far away.”  Hello, world. One more day.

Burrowing in…

Tom is still sleeping.  The sun has yet to come up.  I sit in my comfy chair in its original spot surrounded by all of our belongings neatly stacked on tables, arranged on shelves, or placed in new locations, all priced to sell. 

This will be the last time I sit in this chair writing this blog. When I write again on Monday it will be from Karen’s home in a spot I will choose as close to this familiarity as possible. Ah, creatures of habit, we are!  

Perhaps, it is time for me to welcome change. When our precious little Australian Terrier Willie was alive (he went to Doggie Heaven in April 2011), on occasion I took him along to visit friends.  Invariably, he’d find a spot in the corner of their sofa and burrow himself in, wildly throwing himself around in circles as he would at home, burrowing in until he managed the perfect spot. Will that be me?  Burrowing in?

Is it better to let go of the familiar when one makes a radical life change, such as we?  In my logical brain, I perceive that letting go of the familiar will bring personal growth and discovery.  In my emotional heart, I reach for the cocoons where I’ve found solace and comfort.

Yesterday, my dear daughter-in-law Camille showed up once again to help. Alone in the early morning, the estate sale people done with their pricing, I had tentatively faced the cleaning and washing of our three refrigerators, one giant freezer and emptying all the kitchen cabinets filled with food and spices.

My shoulder, still painful and cracking with a SLAP injury and bicep tendon tear made these tasks painful and daunting. Camille did it all as I stood beside her coaching while we laughed, reminisced and held back the tears. I will miss her.

During the day, friends and neighbors stopped in to see our normally impeccable home, as an impossible array of stuff for sale; once warm and inviting, now cold and austere.  Lots of hugs.  The time is near to say goodbye.

We’re still planning on moving out tomorrow before the Vikings Game at noon. Its hard to cook. The stove and all the counter tops are covered and overloaded with kitchen items for sale with nary a place to make my cup of tea, let alone a full meal.  

Tom suggested we cook the remaining homemade low carb, gluten free frozen pizza, one of very few items left in the freezer. It will serve us well tonight and Sunday night as we continue to gather our belongings to take to Karen’s.

At 4:30, I seasoned a boneless pork roast with my few remaining spices, placing it into the oven while still frozen.  Humm…I thought, where’s the meat thermometer?  I always use a meat thermometer.  Oh well, I’ll wing it, I guess.  

At 6:00 PM, Camille gone after a hard day’s work (thank you, my darling who is so there for me, for us), Tom and I walked down the road to say goodbye to our friend Sue who’s leaving at 5:00 am this morning to go back to “their” home in Florida for the winter, for the first time without Chip, her beloved husband and our friend, who sadly passed away at the end of May.  We’ll miss her too.  

We hugged goodbye.  I held her tight, feeling the lump in my throat, the tears welling in my eyes but she, so wounded from sorrow and tears these past months, refused to succumb, gently pushing me back, insisting “We’ll see each other soon.  This is not goodbye.” Tom and I walked silently down the road home, holding hands.

We walked in the door to the smell of the pork roast cooking in the oven, smelling good, so familiar.  I opened a can of Tom’s favorite green beans (oddly, he prefers canned to fresh), made a salad with little room to prepare and sliced the roast. It was done.  No thermometer.  Yes, maybe I can improvise.

We turned on the plasma TV in the kitchen to watch a show we’ve always recorded on the DVR to enjoy during dinner, Shark Tank.  We laughed, we talked. we cleaned our plates  The food tasted good.  Placing our dirty dishes in the dishwasher, I reminded myself to put price tags on them when they’re clean and place them with the other piles of Fiestaware, service for 24, in four different colors.  Goodbye, Fiestaware.  You’ve served us well.

Tom, now awake, showered and dressed, loaded up the car with a portion of our luggage plus food, wine and booze to leave with Karen.  Tomorrow, we’ll bring over the rest.

Soon we’ll join son Greg, Camille and those three little angels, 5, 4, and 3 for breakfast at IHOP in Eden Prairie after which we’ll head to Costco to order food and supplies for next Saturday’s party for Tom. Then, off to Karen’s to unload the car and back here for what we’ve decided will be our final night in our house.

Tonight, after another busy day of work we’ll fall into our ultra comfy Grand King Sleep Number bed, burrowing in, perhaps without “wildly throwing ourselves around in circles” for the very last time.