Not roller blades. Roller skates. Four polyutherane wheels arranged in a rectangle, not a single line, topped with a metal frame and then a leather-ish boot?
Three years ago, the quest to find roller skates turned into an all-day epic adventure. And it all took place on the Princess’ tenth birthday with her in tow. Six different stores from Surprise to Metrocenter, all to find a simple set of roller skates for my girl.
Finally, we found them and she wore them triumphantly at her birthday party at Great Skate that afternoon. Even as they started to get a little tighter she would wear them either to Great Skate or to skate around the block … maybe not as often as I would have hoped given the Herculean task that was the purchase, but still.
I just watched those skates walk out the door.
All those overpriced Build-A-Bear animals and accessories (including the wheelchair she purchased in case any of her animals were injured)? Buh-bye.
The flamenco dress my wife and I bought her on our once-in-a-lifetime trip to Spain a few years ago? Adios.
Her first bed when I bought my first home after my divorce, the bed that was the centerpiece first of a room with jaguar wallpaper borders and then her current room with the horses (who also soon will be departing). Hasta la vista.
If I sound heartbroken it’s only because I am. I just watched much of my daughter’s childhood disappear in a van for Homeward Bound, a group that helps homeless and domestic violence-addled families with children get a new start.
So all of these items are disappearing to an excellent cause and to children who hopefully will find the same joy my daughter did from her stuffed animals, her bed … and her roller skates.
Nevertheless it’s extremely emotional, much as it’s emotional when you decide to sell your home and, though you may still have equity, the figures aren’t close to what they were a half-dozen years ago.
It’s difficult letting go of that past so much so that it colors our decisions today.
We invest our lives in our homes – not just the financial investment, but the day-to-day raising of our children to the celebrations to the sorrows and everything in between. Here’s where the kids first had their tree swing. There’s where they opened their Christmas presents. Do you remember wrestling with the kids after playing the My Little Pony memory game in that spot?
And yet, at some point, the time comes to let go, to move on to a new place to create new memories and to allow another family to come into our current home and start building memories of their own.
It’s not easy. Letting go never is. The emotions never go away. But logic sometimes dictates the change.
My daughter’s horsie wallpaper border is coming down within the next week or so to be replaced by, well, who knows what. Six months ago it would have been Jack Skellington and now it’s Alice in Wonderland.
There will be new memories coming shortly which will help me stop clinging to the old.