Getting Closer!

The garage is mostly painted, and the shelves built. I might have had to wait for the shelves a bit longer, but the poor worker got tired of moving the heavy shipping boxes around, and since he found out he was the one who would have to build the shelves, he went ahead and put them together.

It’s amazing to me the things that people who know how to do things can do. A connecting part was missing, and he managed to find a way to bolt the two parts of the standards together. A new part has been ordered, but there’s a chance it will never be used because if there is one thing I have learned in life it’s that there is nothing so permanent as a temporary solution.

I’ve tried not to get too excited about the garage since it’s been taking so long, but now that it’s nearing completion and the time for moving my car in is getting closer, I find myself getting excited. Who knew I’d ever want a “dream garage”? But that’s what I’m getting.

It will be good to have a home for my stuff, too. Maybe when I see the totality of it, I’ll find a way to whittle it down. On the other hand, I have shelves! I might as well fill them. I know the current philosophy is that if you haven’t used anything in a year, it should be gotten rid of, but some things make me smile even if I don’t use them, and other things are left over from a previous life (lifestyle?) and someday I might find myself back in that same mindset. I figure that even though I’m getting closer to elderlihoodness, I don’t really have to downsize for old age’s sake for several more years. I can wait until I’m a middling elderly rather than a young elderly. By the time I’m an old elderly, I should be down to just what I can use. Or not. After all, I’m not the one who has to get rid of everything when I’m gone because I’ll be . . . gone.

Odd how sometimes practicality has a rather morbid quality, and today is not a day for planning the end, but planning a new beginning. And I am getting closer to my first garage. My own garage. Surely something to celebrate!

I celebrated with a delicious meal of home-grown bacon and fresh farm eggs, a gift from my contractor. I have a hunch he’s getting excited about the project being finished, too. But, there will be other projects . . .


Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator

7 Responses to “Getting Closer!”

  1. Estragon Says:

    Something I’ve come to learn about myself, not sure if it applies to others, is that that “wanting” has an infatuation that’s eventually extinguished by the “having”. Things, money, people, experiences, whatever. The wanting is intoxicating. Like eating a bag of chips, somehow the having satisfies a craving, but only temporarily. In time, the having either becomes a deeper, more comfortable part of life, or it becomes yet another burden of something to be maintained, stored, insured, cleaned, etc.

    I’ve yet to figure out in the wanting stage which will become a welcomed part of life, and which will become burdens. I sincerely hope the garage and the stored things are the former for you. You seem to have figured this out.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I’ve never wanted “things.” They always seemed such a burden, weighing me down and making me claustrophobic, as if I were drowning in stuff. For most of my life, I didn’t even have furniture. I certainly didn’t want a house or the responsibility owning major appliances. I never even considered wanting a garage. Those things seemed so far out of the scope of my life that they just never even entered my mind.

      I don’t have the “thing” thing figured out. I think it’s more that I have the burden of ownership on abeyance. Or perhaps the very fact of owning a house so outweighs everything else that it doesn’t matter much anymore. What helps is that I have no intention of ever moving. And if I do have to move, I will be so old and my stuff ancient, that someone else will have to deal with it. Oddly, I don’t really think of most of this stuff as mine. The furniture and china and things like that were donated. (A brother cleared out his storage unit and furnished the house for me, but he disavows any ownership of the furniture.)

      A lot of the stuff that will be stored in the garage needs to be sold — it’s the remains of a business Jeff and I had — but I have no idea what to do with it or how to turn it into cash. For now, if it’s packed away, that burden can be packed away, too.

      Luckily, I no longer want a lot of things or even experiences. The cravings for adventure that Jeff’s death created in me have finally been laid to rest. It’s possible all those years of grief and wanting what I couldn’t have killed any wanting.

      Well, except for chips and such things as that. Sometimes the wanting overwhelms my good sense, and the balance isn’t restored until the chips are eaten. Then, of course, I wonder why I indulged. So I try not to want even that sort of thing.

      Of course, this laissez-faire attitude will go out the window when things start breaking down and I don’t have the funds to fix them. But that’s a worry for another day.

      • Estragon Says:

        There are channels to dispose of most remnants of a business. Depending on what it is, you might want to see if a local trustee in bankruptcy could point you in the right direction. They often have access to the channels to liquidate inventory, etc. In selling businesses in the past, I’ve also had remnants. You can probably realize a better buck by selling it piecemeal, but doing that can be a real pain. I’ve found it better to clear the decks wholesale.

        I know what you mean about stuff not really belonging to you (or maybe you to it?). In my case, most of the people, things, experiences, etc. were “ours”. There is no “us” now, so it all seems sort of foreign.

        I think you may have it figured out better than you think!

        • Pat Bertram Says:

          I’d like to find a way to sell the stuff piecemeal, but Ebay and Etsy never struck a chord with me. I can let the stuff sit awhile, but if I can’t figure out a way to make money at it, I’ll look into a liquidator. Thanks for the suggestion.

          I know Jeff has no ties to these things anymore, but they were his as much as mine, so even after all these years, it seems weird to be making decisions on his behalf. Or rather my behalf. I know he’d prefer I just throw the stuff away, but any money I could get would be a help.

          That “no us” thing is really hard to deal with. I think it took me about eight years before I felt like “me” rather than a broken “us.”

  2. Uthayanan Says:

    Attachment and detachment.
    The latter days I felt you are getting somehow attached to material.
    But I was wrong. Your reply helped me to understand you better.
    You are living in a period of laissez-faire for a while to have a roof of your own and a garden to wonder. Might be Jeff like the way of living like this the latter part of his life too.
    I don’t know while I am grieving and with daily walking try to keep my feet an mind to steady.
    I am happy about your reply it is very much moving.
    Take care and wish you good health for you and to write more.

  3. Judy Galyon Says:

    I would be excited too if I were you!!!! The shelves look great! I know you will enjoy putting stuff on them! Your project continues!!!

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