Here it is, the first chapter of my new story. It’s called Unimaginable Treasure. Please know, that I will never judge anyone from holding on certain things. So there’s no need to feel embarrassed about it. We are all humans, doing our best. I am not one to judge or express shame among anyone. I hope you like it. Please feel free to provide me with any feedback. I will be posting a chapter every Wednesday.
It was a chilly Friday afternoon in late September. The leaves began changing their colours, and some trees were completely bare, whereas other trees still had the majority of their leaves. Lisa had just got home from school a half hour ago. She was worried about her friend, Sophie who wasn’t at school earlier.
Sophie was briskly walking through a pile of leaves, where she saw her friend, Lisa reading some kind of scary book on her porch. She had saw Lisa drinking a cup of hot chocolate with mini marshmallows. Sophie can tell Lisa didn’t make it too long ago, since she was able to see the steam rising from the red mug.
Upon Sophie’s arrival, Lisa put her book away, as Sophie sat down on the bench beside her. Lisa knew something was wrong because she noticed that Sophie’s face was red and her eyes were puffy and glossy.
“What’s wrong?” Lisa asked.
“It’s my Grandma…” Sophie began, but couldn’t hold back her tears long enough to tell Lisa.
Lisa began hugging Sophie, but that just made Sophie sob even more.
“Shhh… It’s okay. We’ll get through this together.” Lisa promised, hugging her tighter.
The last time Sophie had called her, she had told Lisa that her Grandma had suffered a stroke, and she wasn’t doing well. Lisa was really sad for Sophie, but at the same time she didn’t know how to comfort her friend since she had never lost someone close to her before.
“Here, you need this more than I do.” Lisa confessed as she handed Sophie her mug of hot chocolate.
“Thanks.” Sophie said, grabbing the mug and began taking sips from it, as she was wiping away her tears.
“Listen, let’s have the best weekend ever! And then after that we will seriously have to study for our history test this Friday.” Lisa declared.
“Yeah, sounds like fun. But I think on Sunday I have to be with my family, to help make funeral arrangements for my Grandma.” Sophie announced.
“Understandable, let’s have a lot of fun. I can even cancel my date with Ben tomorrow. I can see if he wants to reschedule until Sunday. For now, I’m all yours. Let’s turn the frown upside down!” Lisa said hopefully.
“You didn’t have to do that, but I appreciate you doing that for me.” Sophie said, realizing that she has the best friend in the whole world.
Lisa and Sophie have been friends since they were toddlers. They first met each other in preschool.
They had spent the weekend doing many fun things like staying up all night, making sundaes, painting their nails and reading the latest gossip from Hollywood.
After all that fun, Sophie had to leave and get ready to spend time with her family. They needed to discuss the funeral arrangements, and get the photos ready for the funeral room.
Sophie had thanked Lisa for giving her an amazing weekend. Lisa was happy that she got to help Sophie. Sophie is an only child, and all of her cousins live in another city, and weren’t planning on coming in until Sunday morning. Sophie was more than grateful to have Lisa help her through this difficult time.
Sophie was surrounded by her family as they had made arrangements for her late Grandmother. Lisa got to hang out with Ben since she had rescheduled their date.
The next few days were filled with sorrow for Sophie attending her Grandma’s funeral. Lisa and Ben made study cards and started studying for their history test.
Eventually Sophie’s family went to her Grandma’s house. They didn’t realize that her house was jam packed with various items. Every room except her kitchen and dining room was filled with stuff floor to ceiling. They finally realized that’s why their Grandma didn’t allow visitors anymore.
Sophie’s father, David, the son of her Grandma began cleaning up her house. Sophie looked around and she knew that she wanted her Grandma’s recipe books, her Grandma made the best cherry cheesecake. She had talked to her cousins and wondered if they could make a three way split between their Grandma’s doll collection.
Her family agreed to take some things from the house. Sophie loved drinking tea, and her Grandma had various collections of matching tea cups and tea pots, as well as the milk jug, and sugar holder. She had a collection set in roses, teddy bears and plain porcelain. Sophie had her eye on all three sets.
Some of the things that her Grandma had kept were a lot of paper from her son and daughter’s school years. She had kept a lot of photos and cards from various holidays and birthdays. Her fridge was completely covered with magnets from all of the places she had travelled to. She had a lot of clothes. Despite having a walk-in closet, two dressers it just wasn’t enough. She had kept her clothes in the spare room, too. Her jewelry spilled all across the top of her dressers, and her countless jewelry boxes.
Her family had spent two weeks shredding papers, donating the clothes, the jewelry after they had all agreed to keep a few things each.
Sophie had hung out a lot with Lisa and Ben. She had showcased all of her cool new things that she got from her Grandma’s house. Lisa admired the porcelain tea set collection a lot.
After all of that, they moved on to the next phase which was to donate the furniture, clean the carpets and floors which hadn’t been seen for several years. The last time David remembered seeing the floors was when he had helped his mom deal with his Dad’s belongings after he passed away seven years ago.
Next David, and his sister, Claire found a realtor, because they wanted to list her house on the market, and hopefully sell it by Christmas.
After a few weeks had passed, Sophie realized that her parents were going through all of their belongings, and updating their wills. It was now the middle of October and all of the leaves had fallen to the ground.
“Hey, what are you up to?” Sophie asked.
“Well, having to clean up after both of my parents. It’s a lot of work. My Dad didn’t have a lot of stuff, but my mother had a bunch of things. I don’t want you to be left with this burden after we pass away.” David confessed, as he was filling up another bag of his belongings. His wife, Samantha was doing the same thing.
There was a small pause. Sophie was processing what her Dad had just said.
“What are you going to do with all of these things?” Sophie wondered.
“We’re going to donate these. There are various donation sites around the city that accept donations.” Samantha answered.
“I think that maybe Grandma was lonely, so instead of filling her home with memories she filled it with things. Like maybe that was her way of remembering us. Hear me out, she had kept yours and Aunt Claire’s school work throughout the years. It’s like her way of holding onto you.” Sophie explained.
“Yes, that can be a fair assessment of what happened.” David agreed.
This made Sophie really think about things. She went to her room and began examining her things, as well. She started with her closet. She began asking herself if she had worn any of these clothes in the past year. If she hadn’t she threw them on the floor until she had realized that she had a mountain of clothes on her floor. She decided it would be a good idea to grab a reusable bag and start packing all of these things. Next she had moved on to her books.
A few days later she was hanging out with Lisa and Ben at Ben’s house. Sophie had brought the roses tea set with her this time. They eventually made some Earl Grey tea. They started making pumpkin cookies as they were trying to decide on a scary movie to watch.
“I haven’t seen you this happy in a long time.” Lisa noticed.
“Yeah, what’s your secret?” Ben asked.
“Well, you would think that with everything that has happened to me, you would like that I wouldn’t be happy. But I found a way.” Sophie explained as she was sipping her tea.
“These past weeks have taught me a lot of lessons. I realized that it is good to let things go that I don’t use anymore. My Grandma must have had 250,000 items in her house. Most of them were memories of my cousins, aunt, my parents and myself. We don’t need to hold on to things to remind things by, our memories are kept in our minds and hearts. I was inspired to get rid of some of my belongings. I feel like it’s allowed me to feel more joy since I’m no longer bombarded with all of this clutter around me. I have even spoken to the principal if we can have a donation week. It’s where we can donate our stuff, and it gets donated to places where people can help themselves if they are in need.” Sophie explained.
Lisa and Ben were in awe with her enthusiasm to help other people.
“How about we forget this movie and we can take our tea and cookies and we can get started with Ben’s stuff first?” Sophie asked.
“That sounds like a great idea.” Lisa confessed.
The three of them carefully carried their tea cups up the stairs and walked into Ben’s room to start their decluttering mission.