Holding on to the stories, not the stuff.

Why is it so hard to part with our stuff? It’s just that right? stuff?


I had a garage sale today and yesterday. I was excited to see at first that there was a lot selling. I want to live with less, much less then I am living with right now. I am desiring simplicity more and more and this is one step in the right direction. Most of it I said good riddance to, but a lot of Chris’s things were in the garage sale as well. All of his clothes, his shoes, his posters, his old baseball cards, these things were a little harder to say good bye too. It’s a reminder that he is no longer here.

There were a couple of things that I put out and then later regretted selling. “I should have kept that for Gabby when she is older.”
“Would he have wanted me to sell this?”
Thoughts like this went through my mind and the weight of regret and guilt and sorrow was heavy.

However, a friend reminded me that it’s about the stories of that person that keeps their example and witness alive. It’s not the stuff.

Sure Gabby would like some of her Daddy’s things when she is older. There are some specific things saved already. But what she is really going to remember are the stories. Stories of how her Daddy loved baseball and how he was the most competitive person you will ever meet. She will remember the stories about how he loved Grammy’s cookies or how he ate an exorbitant amount of shrimp scampi at Red Lobster with his best friends. She will learn about who he was and what mattered most to him and follow his example even after he is gone. She will learn about his extreme devotion to his students when she reads the letters they all wrote to her.

Gabby will know her Daddy. She will hear about his life from myself and her family and all of our friends, and she will know his spirit.

So when I die, because we all do, I want people to remember me by my life not by my stuff. The way I see it, the more I can get rid of and give to others, the better. And the more I can recall, recount, write and live out Chris’s life and example the richer I will be.

If you have any great memories or stories of Chris and wouldn’t mind sharing them, Gabby and I would love to read them.



One thought on “Holding on to the stories, not the stuff.

  1. My brother died very young as well. He was 26 left a wife and 9 month old daughter. She is now 42 years old. All she wants is stories about her dad. He mother kept something’s of my brother for her but she is not real interested in them as much as she wants to know what kind of dad she missed out on. So what you didn’t save is ok, don’t worry about you should have saved it. Most important as your friend said is stories.

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