Childhood, Dreams, Family, Letting Go, Memory

Meditation on Yard Sales

I have a tendency to hold on.

This tendency is so strong, I’m confident I will end up a haunting ghost in someone’s house when I go.

I hold on to photographs, to letters, to my child’s sketches. I refuse to part with shoes I want to love but can’t because they give me blisters; nor can I say goodbye to the beat up stuffed animal I’ve had since sixth grade.  The t-shirt I received as a party favor at a forgotten friend’s bat mitzvah sits at the bottom of a box  with fifteen others waiting to be turned into a quilt I’ll never make.

I hold tight to first impressions, grudges, undeserved adulation.

And then sometimes, I let go.

No, not just that.

I purge.

I prepare a huge yard sale and lay all my attachments on the grass for everyone to peruse.  Everyone I know and don’t know descends on my beloved belongings.

“Please take them from me!” my eyes say. And they do. For a penny, for a song.

And my load becomes lighter.

If I were to die then and there, I could float up to Heaven like a feather on the wind.

5 thoughts on “Meditation on Yard Sales”

  1. I love the image of the feather floating skyward. My feather, sadly, would only rise to the height determined by the shortest power cord on one of my 11 TVs. Haven’t watched a show in 7 years, but passing up a perfectly good device sitting there by the dumpster is beyond my self-control. Even if I don’t need it.and even if it substantially weakens my case for requesting an exemption from the TV tax. (I signed for a registered letter a week ago in which they claimed I owe 2076 shekels)
    Just had a long conversation with my SO about yard-sales in our parts. She did hers with a month-long ad on Yad 2. I’m not sure the phenom is much of a thing here, you know, the tables on the lawn. In part because, like, when do you hold it? We have no weekend, as you know. Friday’s frantic shopping , errands, and cooking till the bell of doom sounds. Shabbat, you end up nervously gazing at nearby trees for a sign of ‘Shabbos! ankle-biters., then bang, back to the grindstone.
    (And I still can’t buhleeve I found someone literate and clever with/to whom to commiserate. about this and plenty more. I do say keep the mementos; never know when your inner child will need a momentous moment of reverie. Shabbat Shalom.


  2. This post is a wonderful reminder that it’s time again to go through the house and pare down all the STUFF. I don’t save things for yard sales because I know I would never get around to holding one. I just pack away the things I no longer want/need/love into boxes and bags and take them to a local charity. I always feel lifted as I drive away, just as you described.


  3. It’s refreshing to read this in an age where everyone is chasing after instant gratification. I think deep down we all know when it’s time to hold on and time to let go. Like your feather metaphor, the past be a load that grounds us, or a window to set us free.


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