A client of mine, Kathy, sent me a story about how her family’s 1950s dining table taught her a lesson in letting go.
Kathy’s parents had raised their family around the table, and Kathy inherited it after her parents both passed.
When she was ready to pass the table on, Kathy found the name of a good collector to come and give it a new home.
Then something happened.
The night before the scheduled pickup, Kathy couldn’t sleep.
“After the confirmation of the table pickup, I noticed I had an upset stomach. It kept me up past midnight. Why didn’t the knot disappear?
As I lay in bed trying to relax my stomach muscles, I realized it was not my stomach giving me problems, nor what I had eaten… it was my head!
Kathy’s parents had been involved in their church and hosted many dinners with friends and the community around “THE TABLE.” Kathy’s own children had eaten many a dinner with their grandparents there.
“Emotions and realizations started to trickle out. Why did THE TABLE mean so much? Why did getting rid of a few pieces of furniture cause such upheaval to my physical being!
Letting Go of Stuff
After her Mom passed, Kathy kept THE TABLE in her house and the chairs in her garage. She even bought a NEW, smaller table to replace it. But she still struggled with getting rid of her parents’ old table.
“My thoughts drifted. I started to think what THE TABLE had been in my life: a place where we had parties with Mom and Dad, future members of the family, fiancées, cousins, my husband and our children.
No one else in the family wanted THE TABLE. The dealer was coming to give it a new home. She HAD a table to replace it with. So … what was the problem? Why was her stomach in knots?
I realized THE TABLE symbolized events in my life I had lived and let slip into into my memory bank. Important times with family. I was reminded that all were not good times around THE TABLE… some I guess I wanted to forget. I felt how so much had changed– how Mom and Dad were gone. How our family was going our separate ways and how my time, too is slipping away.
Kathy cried for the loss of time passing, and beloved memories that she could not recapture. She cried for the here and now too: her roommate who moved out and her sick cat who may soon have to be put to sleep.
Letting go of the table is letting go of a tangible item that brought back many emotional memories. But also of the feeling that they became lost in time, things we supposedly thought were so important. I needed to realize that being together, COMMUNITY around the TABLE is the most important point of all.
What do you need to let go of? Contact me and let’s talk.
Want to read Kathy’s complete story? The TABLE – Full Text