My clients have taught me that in the end, the worth of an item is measured only by the joy it brings at a particular point in time. Many of us claim to cherish our possessions, only to discover that with the passage of time, they don’t mean as much anymore, or they have become a burden to us in some way.
Perhaps our tastes have changed. Our home is too cluttered, or the sheer volume of what we own has caused marital strife. Maybe you feel guilty because mom passed away and you feel the need to take a lot of what she owned.
Today, more and more people are selling their stuff to downsize, make extra money, empty an estate, or to simplify their lives and not have their stuff own them. I’ve seen each scenario described, and I have witnessed what appear to be love affairs between people and their things.
A recent client told me he was terminally ill and he had many collectibles and oddities he had collected over the years. He wanted me to come over, sell what I could, and send the proceeds to benefit a wonderful organization. What a beautiful thought, but it’s what he said that made me really think: “Mrs. Hall, it’s time for someone else to enjoy these items which brought me so much pleasure. I am blessed beyond measure. These are just things that I had fun fixing up and looking at. But it is a humbling thought knowing someone won’t make it through the night, and it’s time to move forward. My job right now is not to worry about this stuff … it’s to live as long as I can!”
Suddenly, everything shifted as his words sunk in. I always thought I was unique to my industry – that while I was an expert in personal property, I never truly had love for these things, just appreciation. Clients like him have taught me what’s really important in life.
© 2011, The Estate Lady