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Memories – Not For Sale

House for SaleIt’s been seven-and-one-half years since my husband died; my daughter is grown and out on her own. So I have had a great deal of time to do some thinking. I have been thinking about selling my family home and move into something smaller; or should I stay here and hire people to help me maintain my family home when it becomes too much for me. I thought I was going to go crazy making this decision on my own, so I began by talking with family and some close friends. I wanted to know what they thought. They were very supportive but the general answer was – I needed to do what I felt was best for me. This was the first house my husband and I bought together; this is where we raised our daughter. All my family memories are in this house. I feel safe in my home and happy; it makes me smile when I think of all the fun times we had here. They say that you pay for your house, but the memories you make there are priceless. So, after a few more months of overthinking everything, I finally made my decision. I was going to sell my family home because the place I called home for all those years had become just a house. It was a place where I woke up every morning, a place where I took a shower and a place I went to sleep. It didn’t feel like a home anymore, it was just four wall and some windows.

The process of putting my house up for sale opened a whole new box of emotions for me. I thought since I had been grieving for over seven years, I have felt every emotion possible. I was wrong! I have learned to cope with my feeling of grief. These are a few I tricks I learned along the way.

  1. Embrace your feelings, don’t run from them.
  2. You can pack your feelings away, but you still have to deal with them later.
  3. You can put material things in a box, but those memories are always in your heart.
  4. You can only do what you can get done today. Everything else can wait until tomorrow.
  5. If family and friends offer to help, accept it.
  6. When packing make three piles,
    • To donate/give away.
    •  Things to throw away.
    •  Things that you can’t live without and need to take with you.
  7. Label everything / try to stay organized.
  8. When unpacking
    • If you have a place for it put it there
    • If not donate/give away
    • Discard damaged or broken items
  9. It takes time to settle in to your new home. Be patient with yourself.
  10. Get plenty of rest, eat healthy and drink plenty of water.

Once you are all settled into your new home, invite family and friends over to celebrate your accomplishment and begin building new memories.

I have been in my new home for a while now and things are starting to become easier for me. I have purchased a few new items for my home and I had to rearrange a few things so that they made more sense to me. I even planted a few flower pots to put outside my front door to celebrate my new home. I am planning on living in my home for a few months before I pick out some paint colors and hang things on the wall, but that is just me over thinking things, again.

May you find comfort and strength in your heart.

About Dawn Rehrauer

Dawn is a Bereavement Counselor, and co-founder of Grief Relief, at Agnesian HealthCare. She has been working in this area for five years. She is passionate about helping those that have lost a significant person in their lives through their grieving process. Dawn can be reached by emailing rehrauerd@agnesian.com.

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