Wow, my last post was as far from shiny and bright as you can get…so flip the page and let’s get back on the right path here.
I am back at my parent’s home in Oregon. I flew in Friday and was picked up at the airport by my sister, Teresa, and my Mom. We then went and had dinner in Eugene with my youngest sister, Marta and her family. We had a pleasant evening and then made our way over to the Coast to my parent’s home.
I steeled myself for my reaction to walking into the house for the first time since my father died, back in May. There are no words to describe the condition of my heart since then…I wonder if fractured hearts show up different on x-rays.
Mom and Teresa have been having Estate Sales in preparation for their move. They have gone through the house and put stickers on everything that is for sale. I had already prepped myself to be struck with sadness and melancholy when I stepped into the house…what I wasn’t prepared for was the disconnect I felt. The house did not look the same…furniture had already been sold, pictures were off the wall, everything personal was put away and it was NOT my Dad’s place. Now before you think “How Sad”, I am telling you … I was so relieved.
The next day, we got up bright and early and prepared for the lookie-loos. The lookie-loos were out in full force, but there were also people with pennies in their pockets, eager to score a treasure or two. We met some really nice people passing through. Sure, certain items brought back memories, but they were all good ones, some even comical.
It was interesting to watch every man who came to the sale walk over to the old rusty Ford truck and check it out. We had put a sold sign on it. One older man asked me how much we sold it for. When I told him it had belonged to my father and was sold for $1 he almost had a coronary. I told him the story of my dad and my son Chris making a deal back when Chris was a wee lad around five-years-old. Chris liked the truck and Dad was teasing him and said he could buy it if he had any money. Chris just happened to have a wadded up dollar in his jeans. When he gave it to Dad…Dad accepted it and told him he had a deal. So finally after all these years, the Ford will be delivered to Chris in the next few weeks. The man actually got tears in his eyes. He said that was such a great story and he was happy for my son. So am I.
We have one more sale scheduled for this weekend…then anything left will be picked up by a charity. Most everything is packed for the move and we will be on our way.
So what is my shiny and bright? I feel blessed to have all the memories I have of this place where my parents have lived together. I am grateful that my mother seems to be finding joy despite the biggest loss of her life and I am thrilled to be able to help her and my sister as they move to California, where we will be living so close together. I wish that this move had never become necessary. I wish with all my might that Dad was sitting in the living-room working on a crossword puzzle right now. He isn’t, but our Dad will never be dead in our hearts. He is so very present in so many ways. He has influenced every fiber of our lives and his words will always play on in our memory, guiding us, comforting us, reprimanding us, and I’m sure, amusing us. It is good for me to remember that I can still see shiny and bright and even though my heart still aches and probably alway will, I can feel joy. I do feel joy.