Our Sunday paper has a light weight home section that I take a look at each week. It’s geared towards those who call the plumber to clean the p-trap under the sink, or who try to keep up with trends. That’s OK. Everyone needs resources. I always flip through it because there’s usually one article worth reading, even if it to warn me of an upcoming fad to roll my eyes at 😂.

This Sunday’s eye-catching article was about decluttering. The author decided her pandemic year would be spent clearing the attic and basement. She wrote about why it was so hard while, acknowledging that our children’s generation (we seem to be contemporaries) doesn’t want our stuff, much less our parent’s stuff, that we are all are still hanging on to. Then she got personal.

She wrote simply and eloquently (those two go together so often) about a binder her dad made her. Letters and notes after all of her childhood events and milestones. How could she let go of it, even if she digitized it? It’s a tactile gift from her father in his hand from the last person who could say, “This is my daughter.” No one could introduce her that way any more. This idea hit me like a sucker punch, but I grieved for her, the one who put words to this. I have been blessed with many who have parented me. These folks enhanced my childhood experience, and even my adult experiences. Right down to 4-5 years ago when Jane, my former mother-in-law, introduced me to a neighbor as ‘my daughter.’ Maybe having so many that helped rear me, or accepted me into their tribe along the way, allows me to look outward from the author’s statement: No one is left to call me daughter. I miss my parents, and many of those who, well let’s face it, kept my ass on the right path, who have themselves headed out to a better place. I feel very blessed for all their influences on my life, particularly the ones I called ‘Mom & Dad.’

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