My brother came to town last week to help clean up my mom’s STuFF (material items she didn’t need) she had after she passed away. I was looking forward to seeing my brother (and we ended up having a great time together) but I was NOT looking forward to being dragged through the emotional dirt of it all. Looking through old mail, photos, things they left behind… trying to make decisions… what to keep what to give away what to donate where to donate it where do I put the things I want to keep what do you want to keep will this ever be done? Ah yes, the run on sentince that is getting rid of your parents “estate”.

I was strong in my ability to plow through as best I could and just get shit done. I have been cleaning up on and off for 2 1/2 years. My brother did the majority of the work with his dad this time around and I was very thankful and appreciative to have him here to help.

It’s the week after that I don’t look forward to. The aftermath. The leftovers. In Back to the Future Part III, Marty goes back to the year 1886, where he meets Mad Dog Tannon (Biff’s ancestor from the wild west) upon arrival into town.

This scene a great visual metaphor:

Kind of a comical interpretation… this makes me smile but it’s the only scene I could think of in my head that truly represented how I felt. Grief.. horses… dirt.. emotions… rope — don’t feel like you have a choice.

That’s why grief is, in my opinion, the hardest feeling to wrap your head around. It’s this forever changing, shifting entity that takes hold of you when you least expect it and you feel like you have no way of controlling it. I’d say the only way to control this is by not feeling at all, but then it will eventually catch up to you, which in fact will cause even more pain and explosions, so it’s not like you can avoid it at all anyway!

Ever know anyone who’s suddenly flipped out because they never processed a certain emotion or event that happened 20 years ago? It creeps out of the corners like mold in the basement… Eventually you have a big problem on your hands. A gross, unlivable part of your home that needs fixing. Deal with grief – head on. And use all the tools you can to process it. You will have a better, happier life.

How have YOU dealt with your parents or loved ones belongings?