Friday, January 07, 2011


I finally got under Mum's house today to start clearing away Dad's workshop and 45 years of family life.

I've made two trips to Tiny's Green Shed, the re-use facility at Mugga Way tip, the car dangerously loaded.

Dad's trained as an electrician in the Air Force.  He was also a keen gardener and adaptive re-user before it was trendy.  It was how he and we grew up.  His workshop is full of tools and boxes upon boxes of useful things, or things that might be useful one day.  He spent a lot of time fixing things and creating things under the house. Mum can't go in, she keeps seeing him at the bench.  I know what she means.  He is very present in that place.

It is really hard to dismantle that.

My brother has been slowy removing Dad's tools.  As he needs something, he removes it and doesn't return it.  My brother, although he lives next door and is currently on leave, is keeping well clear while I deal with the other stuff. 

When Dad died, I was the strong one.  One of us had to do the organising and holding it together.  I didn't do a very good job of holding it together today.  I only had to pull off the road twice to howl.

I'm not counting any of the things from under the house as outs.  If I stop and think about it long enough to enumerate I will be paralysed.

While this is emotionally horrible, it's necessary.  I can also recommend being responsible for getting rid of someone else's shit as an antidote to consumerism.


Sheep Rustler said...

Your last line is so, so true.

Lots of hugs. And I do know how you feel, sort of.

Hope the puppies can help you feel a bit better.

happyspider said...

Hugs xox

2paw said...

Nothing wrong with feeling sad, it's a hard time and a hard thing to do. Take care.

nettie said...

It's really, really tough. Howl all you like. Grief can hit you like a truck. Time alone will make things only slightly less raw.

And I totally agree with your last sentiment!

chocolatetrudi said...

Paul's father died not long after we met, and his mother had passed away a year before. Clearing out his parents' house was tortuous, and there was no leaving it until another, easier time.

Michelle said...

It is so tough. You almost have to put on a veneer of "I don't know this person - I'm just here to get rid of the stuff." But then that doesn't seem fair to the person! It's a web of horrid, conflicted torment.

Totally agree with your last line. So true.

Olivia said...

A hard thing to do. I hope it will feel better when it's done. We had to clean out grandma's house a few years ago, which had mum sweating to become a minimalist in her own house!

Leonie said...

That is indeed a very hard job to do. A necessary one in a lot of ways but still very challenging. Wishing you all the strength you need to do it and the peace that will come when it's done. Thinking of you.

Lynne said...

My WM helped my mum clear out my dad's single-garage-sized shed in Jan (12 months after dad passed away). I don't think I could have done it - I was in the house and saw some of the stuff but my father's 81 years of life in two trips to the tip was more than I can bear thinking about!

You are a strong and brave woman.