Sorting Through the Stuff

What a fascinating day. A tumult of emotions of turbulence, tender awareness and growth.

I spent the majority of the day with my grandfather, my Gumbie, sorting through decades worth of accumulated papers, knick-knacks, pictures, and loot up in Vermont. Granted, Vermont was his second home, his vacation home, but for the last 5 years or so it has also been his primary residence during the fair-weather months.

He is so precious to me.

Gumbie Sorting.jpg

I am amazed at his willingness to move through these articles, so many of which are ingrained with memory and sentiment. There were moments that I needed a break, a sit-down, a snack, a breath of fresh air, and I would look through the windows to see him still ambling about, sorting and stacking – so motivated to do something many would consider far too exhausting, emotionally and otherwise.

I think he sees what I see, feels what I feel about this.

Before we started this project a couple days ago, I presented the idea to him. He was amenable, and assured me this was something he had been considering for a while. We talked about how releasing ‘stuff’ can release internal ‘stuff’ too – can open up life to new possibilities. How it can help you think, to breathe, and to create – help you focus on the things that you want to do NOW, in the present.

He clearly took these ideas to heart, and has been running with them.

I am honored that he trusts me – to sort his stuff, to put my hands on everything he owns, to scan the contents of his heart and his history.

Grandpa is 88 years old – 89 in only a few short weeks. That is a full life – that is an inordinate accumulation of STUFF – inside and out.

He has shared so many memories with me this week. I wish I could have recorded down each one, but I am often entranced by the moment. My moments with him.

He is so special to me.

Today was a day ordained and designed by God. There is no doubt in my mind.

Many other things happened today. There were outside factors, arguments – other people, other pain, other stuff. Heavy stuff, sometimes painful stuff. But at the end of the day, Grandpa and I were together again, just him and me, sitting watching the game, eating our ice cream and discussing his future – a future that he is prepared to seize on his own terms, in his own way.

I am honored to be a special piece of this man’s heart, for he fills up so very much of mine.