“Yell,” Dreamer says,
“when the trailer hitch is exactly
6 inches from the rear wall.”
That’s the length of my hand.
I plaster myself
into the far left corner
of the RV storage unit,
40 feet from the door.
Side margins equal
the space between my elbow
and first set of knuckles.
Which are white.
“What if you can’t hear me?” I holler.
But he’s already revving
our 32-foot Behemoth
up the incline, into the unit.
Half-way in, he brakes,
folds his side mirror flat.
“Driving blind,” he calls.
Success now rests
on his hearing plus
my depth perception.
And I’m nearsighted.
Somehow, by trusting each other, we pull it off.
Even as I daily resolve to move forward, embrace Change, backing up plays a role—especially as we try to downsize 45 years of shared life. Nearly 3 decades in our current house.
Have you read The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning, by Margareta Magnusson, aged somewhere between 80 and 100?
Granny-mags, as we fondly call her, urges streamlining. We respect our heirs’ emotions and precious time by downsizing while we’re still able-bodied.
is a permanent form
of organization . . .”
Death can be a friendly presence, directing priorities.
Go back. Item by item.
Remember and reflect on
the small joys of a long life.
Tucked within books and yellowing files I find childhood stories our daughters wrote. I find grade school stories by yours truly, saved by my mother.
Depth perception turns fluid—Mom’s behind me now, somehow alive, guiding me as I dismantle home.
Just as Mom might say,
Granny-mags offers this:
“There is always a young person,
starting a new life.”
Growing a home.
So donate. Leave notes in those books you’re giving away.
Bless someone with that desk or table, and share vital or funny things learned or written or served there.
One snippet of history, passed on, provides the needed distance to let go. My vision widens and deepens, the way having two eyes makes depth perception possible.
What is depth perception?
I’m freeing myself from tunnel vision:
the fear-driven caching of stuff—things
I’ll never miss. Junk.
By day, we downsize.
By night, online, room by room,
we study house after house.
We divvy the list, mostly still feel
we are driving blind
yet joyriding, this time
in a ’78 ragtop Super Beetle,
a fresh wind stirring memories,
all this chaff blowing out the back . . .
Health update: Med-wise, Dreamer’s cardiologist says to “Stay the course.” He sees the hematologist today, October 4th.
We await the referral to a Muscular Dystrophy specialist.