Dixie Darr

Out With the Old

In Lent - Season of Change on March 25, 2017 at 3:26 pm

Lent – Season of Change, Day 22

My father was a carpenter as was his father before him. My brother, an architect by profession, makes beautiful wood pieces in his spare time. I have things each of them made me, and they are my most prized possessions. The most treasured is a toy cupboard Grandpa Darr made me when I was a baby. It’s now a genuine antique.

Some things, though, are not made to last forever or even for a lifetime. Case in point: a toybox my dad made when I was little and that I use to this day to hold sweaters at the foot of my bed. Well, really I use it as a place to pile laundry. It’s ugly. I’ve kept it because Dad made it, and I couldn’t bear to throw it away. Always frugal, like many people raised during the Depression, he used scrap wood for most of his projects. Then to dress it up, I suppose, he bought an “antiquing” kit, which covered it in a think coat of paint and then stain to make it look like wood. I never understood this because it was already wood. Anyway. It’s ugly and now it’s falling apart.

I found a storage bench to replace it that’supholstered in purple microfiber that looks fabulous in my bedroom. I’m taking the toybox to the dumpster, a poignant move because today is the anniversary of Dad’s death. Nine years ago, we said goodbye for the last time. I love you, Dad, and I think of you every day, but I’m still going to dump this piece. It wasn’t your best work, and I have plenty of other things you made me that I really love—my worktable and dry sink and Grandma Darr’s sewing desk and others.

I’m crying as I write this, but my memories of you aren’t captured in these things. It’s time to let go.

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