Recycle, Remember, Release

Today I took a trip into the past. Mum’s house is still vacant, despite her passing over a year ago, but finally preparations are happening in earnest to sell it.I thought there might be more tears but time has a way of healing and reducing that ache and in its place leaving bitter sweet memories.

So many happy meals shared here
Lots of happy meals shared around this table

Anyone who’s lost both parents knows what it’s like. Pouring through “stuff”, reliving memories, holding on to sentimental items is part of the grieving and ultimately ‘letting go’ process.

But it doesn’t always happen overnight.

In my old bedroom yesterday I poured over boxes of trinkets I’d left there. Long forgotten momentos of my youth, dozens of retro earrings, beads, gloves, head pieces.

I had a few wild hippy years and the trinkets made me smile at the memories.

How ironic that in two weeks time we’re going to a good friend’s daughter’s 21st birthday party. The theme is 1920s and some of my past life recycled costume jewellery will be perfect.

A glimpse into my bejewelled past!

What goes around comes around. Mostly.

So much can be recycled, years after their use. Though a lot will also be discarded.

I even found old coins no longer in circulation, the one and two cent piece. They’re worth nothing today yet somehow they still feel like a symbol of abundance. For at one time in my childhood this combined total bought me a decent bag of mixed lollies.

Ah, sweet memories.

They might not be worth anything now but once they were …

Outside in the garden the green waste recycling started. Weeding, pruning, cutting down branches, mowing grass. Cutting down the old to make way for the new. Another family will hopefully, in time, enjoy mum’s once cherished garden.

Hubby found a huge lifelike plastic spider (probably thrown over the fence by the kids next door) and, being the prankster that he is, strategically placed it on my sister’s car windscreen.

Hours later, from inside, I heard her screaming. Clearly she’d found it. I found out later hubby had picked it up off the windscreen and flicked it onto her. It was only when it landed, rubbery side up, that she realised it was fake.

Yes, there were definitely more laughs than tears this weekend. Mum would have been happy.

Recycling the old, reliving the past then letting it go to make way for the new. That’s what this weekend was all about. It was a big start.

Me at the Recycling Centre, clearing out the old green waste

A few things I learnt from our day:

  1. The three box method of decluttering really is the best way. One for rubbish, one for donating and another for keeping and sorting later. I was more ruthless with discarding stuff then I imagined myself to be. Maybe it’s a sign that I’m embracing a new path.
  2. Everyone grieves in their own way. We haven’t rushed the selling of mum’s home, for various reasons, but now it’s time.
  3. It’s good to have a momento or two but everything has its day, even all those old photo albums that I created. These will be the hardest things to part with but there’ll come a time when they too will have to go. We came with nothing. We leave with nothing.
  4. It’s good to look back over old memories but it’s today that counts. And making new memories.
  5. Laughter really is the best medicine.
Loving life

Make today count.

Cherish every moment and don’t be afraid to release those things that hold you back. Outdated things, toxic relationships, negative emotions and situations … if it doesn’t serve you, let it go.

Recycle that plastic, relive the fun road trips and remember those heartfelt memories that made you who you are but more importantly relish the moment.

That’s most really matters. Living right now and making every moment special.

In light and love as we continue the journey.

Sharing for: Frank’s Photo Challenge: Recycle

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133 thoughts on “Recycle, Remember, Release

  1. Perfect post. Agree with you all the way. I remember when I had to go through my mom’s stuff… Letting go is often hard but must be done in order to make space in our life for more beautiful memories to come. Wish you lots of those, Miriam.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh sweetheart! I’m so glad there was laughter waiting there for you! Yes, I know it was not an easy process, and you’re right, we all grieve in different ways and even at different times. You have weathered this with grace.

    While I didn’t know your mother, I suspect she’d be very proud of you.

    *hugs* ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love your three box method Miriam and I’ll adopt this myself! I believe there comes a spiritual lightness when we lighten our material load. Less ‘stuff’ less stress 🙂 Here’s to reliving those joyful memories whilst embracing the present moment fully! Thank you for your wise words beautiful xx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’re right Hayley, there’s definitely a spiritual lightness when we lose some of the stuff which only weighs us down over time. Thank you for your lovely comment my gorgeous friend. Big hugs xo 💕

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi. This post struck a chord with me too. My parents died within 24 hours of each other, but I had already lost my mum to dementia several years earlier. My parents didn’t have anything of financial value, so I kept some plastic bowls, buckets, kitchen items, etc and gradually let them go as they wore out over the years. 3 months ago i downsized totally and moved fulltime into a van (with husband and dog). I decluttered for 2 years prior to this move – but was still shocked at how much more I had to get rid of. But the joy now! To not be weighted down with ‘things’ is immense. And like some of the other people in the comments – I took photos, many of which I posted on fb. We all had a laugh and then the stuff went to charity shops or to the bin.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Janet, sounds like you’ve done a brilliant job of decluttering and minimising your life. Still, it must have been a shock to lose both of them so close together. I lost my mum to a neurological illness which lasted over 18 months, it was a hard time and still now we haven’t sold the house. Tomorrow finally it’s being listed to be sold. Can’t wait to declutter more, not just her place but mine. There’s something to be said for not being weighed down by stuff.
      Love the idea of travelling and life in a van. Enjoy it all and thanks for visiting and leaving a comment. Warmest wishes to you.


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