Divest.

road on trees

 

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Last day of November and I’m asking myself where this year went so quickly. It was September, 2009 that I started weeding out a huge storage unit and started with what was on top. Many well-packed narrow but awkward artwork boxes.

Early one morning I took my boxer dog to the local kennel to get a bath while I drove to storage to fill up the back of my SUV with all of those art boxes.

Just as a finished loading the boxes, my cell phone rang. Apparently Wyatt got upset and they wanted me to come back and pick him up.  I told them I’d be there shortly, rushed back and unloaded all of the boxes and up the stairs to a second floor.

When I got to the kennel, the young man who usually takes care of Wyatt and bathes him, came in and everything was fine.  They told me to come back again in a couple of hours.

Little did I know that day was the beginning of a divestment journey that would take over three years and take me places emotionally I didn’t expect.  More than likely, some of the grief was from my dad passing away back in 2008, but there is also sadness connected with possessions. Or with memories of collecting or displaying those possessions in homes I’ve had.  There is also an unexpectedly wonderful sense of lightness, too.

Framed wall artwork and countless pieces of jewelry photographed, written about and sold the past three years.  And starting another business I never would have even considered years ago – making things.  (another story..)

Divesting is a very freeing sort of adventure, at least for me.  Sure, I’ve seen many things sold on eBay and really find the cheapness of some parts of it somewhat distasteful.  Everyone seems to be looking to buy something for next to nothing.  I found a different web site with a very different price structure with selling costs dramatically less than that at eBay.

After years of weekly business travel, creating / delivering client deliverables, here I was wearing old clothes and weeding through boxes in storage. Most of them packed back in 1998-1999 and forgotten.  Some days it felt like a treaure hunt and I found unlikely items I forgot I had.  It felt good to find a $300. necklace or other pricey piece.

There were times during this sorting process that I felt ashamed of myself.  Shame at the obscene amount of money spent on things the past thirty or more years that were stored away and forgotten.  Butter instead of guns, as the saying goes. Although I did buy real estate as well, I also had a number of collections.  Dolls, antiques and all kinds of vintage.

The search continues and I’ve seen the back wall of the storage unit.  Pulled two chairs down so I could start pulling the boxes out from underneath.  A huge box full of hand blown glassware never used.  Hot, soapy water and lint-free towel later, and all ready for photographs and being listed online.

What did we all do before the Internet? Ah, yes, we took things to flea markets and swap meets. We went to and held garage sales.  Now we take pictures and list things online.

The light at the end of the tunnel is coming closer and this seemingly endless task will be completed soon, hopefully during the holidays this year.  Oh, what a xmas gift that would be to give myself.  And to my late pop who was always suggesting that I ask myself before I  bought something, “Do I really need this?” And who was always asking me if I had cleaned out that storage unit yet and I always told him “not yet, pop.”

Well, very soon I can tell him I finally got that finished, if only during my nightly prayers.  And tell him like I tell him each night, “Thanks for everything,  D.O.D. (dear ole dad)”.

Maple trees

 

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