Tuesday, March 31, 2015


As I continue with my series of Growing Old Gracefully.....

I'll tell you... life is all about the CHOICES we make. And, we start that process very early in life. It continues on until we draw our last breath. I could talk about CHOICES for the next one hundred posts but by then you would have long since put me "out to pasture", big time. So, I make the CHOICE to not bore the socks off of you. 

I guess what's on my mind this morning has to do with gals in my circumstance. It is not age related. It has to do with what life has thrown at you, regardless of what your age is. 

When my hubby died I didn't know who the heck I was anymore. I was flouncing around like a cat that you'd tied a can to it's tail. Around and around and around. 

Once I worked through most of the grief (well, part of it) I was thinking -  I could not bring my hubby back - I could just curl up in a corner (which I had been doing more of less) and exist or I could continue on with living. It was my CHOICE. Which would I choose to do?

I started down-sizing, throwing things out. After all, they were just things!! When the right place came along I moved out of my house and into a nice apartment. I CHOSE to start a new phase of my life. 

I had a blogging friend mention to me that she was looking forward to me addressing the down-sizing part a person is faced with after a death. She has recently lost her husband and I can just imagine how indecisive and confusing her life is right now. 

As I started the downsizing part of my move, I had to make the CHOICE to not look back, (most of the time, that is). Things, Possessions, Keepsakes. What to do with them? 

You can't let your heart rule your head in this matter. Sure there are keepsakes that you just absolutely can't part with... the special Valentine your hubby made for you, a pressed rose from your first bouquet, that beautiful necklace that he'd fastened around your neck. You need those. Those are attached to you with heart strings. Put those things in one pile. 
This image says it all.

Then pick up each piece of the rest of that stuff. Look at it. Yes, you bought it on a trip you and your hubby made. BUT, it wasn't that very special thing. He didn't even like it. And the key phrase....it just won't fit into my new lifestyle. Start a pile of those things. Children may want to claim them, Or perhaps a relative or a friend. If they aren't claimed, they will go into the yard sale pile. It's time for someone else to enjoy them.

Remember, these are things you have cherished, things you have enjoyed in your home. BUT... remember, you are making a new home for yourself. What is the MOST IMPORTANT, YOU CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT. Those are the only things you take with you. 

Don't let your heart go mushy on you, now. Be strong!! Learn to look at these things as having served their purpose already. They brought you joy, they had a special place in your heart. BUT, things have changed. You have CHOICES  to make. Make them filled with grace.

I made mine and lordy how I miss that cute little lamp I had sitting by my bed, that special tablecloth my hubby had bought me in China (one of the kids got it, it doesn't fit my present table.), the books of genealogy (the stuff is on the computer anyway) and a ton of other stuff. 

Nearly every day I wonder whatever happened to one thing or another but I don't dwell on it. Those things were part of another time of my life. I CHOOSE to focus on the here and now. I hope you will, too.

                                                                                       GOD BLESS and happy downsizing!!


  1. Wonderful post and words. The quotes are perfect. Hubby and I are downsizing just in case we decide to move to a smaller place.. Have a happy day!

  2. We're on a love-it-or-set-it-loose phase now, as well, with years and decades of STUFF, and I'm so glad to hear the details of your own transition into your new home. I don't think I could adhere to that blue poster up there: " Discarding, all at once, intensely and completely,." for I think a frenzy of tossing away things and memories would be extremely hard in the midst of settling your mind and heart in a grieving time.

    This is one of the best posts you've ever done, and I'm so looking forward to all your thoughts on this Growing Old Gracefully theme---we were both just admiring that graceful Nautilus staircase, spiraling down with such elegance and permanence, and that perfectly says your message. Turning and descending, swirling and ascending---whatever you make of it.

    I hope you'll drop in on my new little blog---it's a group of small vignettes and cameos and descriptions of people in my little imaginary town---Paxton Mississippi. Maybe there's someone you know, or would like to.


    Hope it's SPRING where you are!!

  3. Fantastic post, Mom! Excellent advice and I think a lot of the "parting with" helps a person to heal, too, as long as only those special things are kept. Great quotes too. Even without a loss, downsizing as we get older is important I know. I have a lot of that ahead of me!

  4. I forwarded your blog to my mother-in-law. I think she will benefit from your wisdom and experience.

  5. You said it all so eloquently! I went through all that after my husband of 51 years died. It's hard! I sold the house we had lived in all those 51 years and bought another smaller one. I threw away, and gave away, and finally moved and left lots of things. Then 3 years later when I married my childhood sweetheart, I had to discard even more stuff. It's painful, but we couldn't use two households of stuff! In one way it was quite 'freeing'. Maybe you understand that. I still miss something once in a while. That was one long chapter in my life, but as my first hubby always said, "Life is for the living". I know he would be glad to know that I found a 'new love' and am beyond happy in this new chapter of my life.

  6. Such a good post! I decided this year that I didn't need to wait to start on this because it will only get harder. My husband won't agree to getting rid of almost anything but I'm trying to pare down and pass things on, or sometimes I sneak things into the trash! Really.

  7. I will never forget this post you have written! We are starting to get rid of some things......just starting. This post made me feel good about it. You have been through a lot but you are certainly someone to look up to. God Bless you!

  8. Absolutely good advice, Latane, as I am in this process. It is hard, but you have faced it. Major furniture not part of the move is gone and I continue to downside. My sewing cabinet and a living room chair function now, but will be put out by the curb when I move. The hardest part for me is the paper clutter. The biggest unknown is when the house will sell.

  9. Wonderful tips and advice. I have begun....first by not buying anything new that does not have a purpose!! I have purged a lot and I find by the next day, I don't miss it and I don't have any regrets!!


I hope you will visit often and leave a comment when you do. My blogging friends always put a smile on my face.