After one of my recent downsizing presentations, a gentleman came up to me and thanked me for my helpful information.
“But I was hoping to hear a little more on deciding about sentimental items,” he said.
“Tell me more about what you’re dealing with,” I responded.
Here is the story he told me.
“I have no children, so my things will go nowhere after I am gone. One of the things I treasure is a gift I received many years ago from a very dear friend. He was an older man with very little means. One day while we walked through the market together, he overheard me admiring a necktie tied into a beautiful knot. Later in the day he surprised me by presenting that tie to me as a gift. I thanked him but said ‘You did not need to spend your money on a gift for me. Why did you do this?’ He told me ‘You are going to be a very successful man, and you will need a nice tie with a beautiful knot.’ I have kept that tie in my closet for all these years. It’s not the nicest one I own, but I often touch it and remember the generosity and encouragement of my friend, now dead for more than 25 years.”
With tears in his eyes he paused and continued, “Now, I am having a hard time deciding what to do with this.”
“Keep it!” I replied, looking back at him through blurry eyes of my own. “It sounds to me like this may be one of the most valuable things in your home.”
He smiled and seemed relieved, as if my permission made him feel better about keeping an item he no longer wore.
Downsizing decisions can be hard, but you’ll know the things worth hanging onto when you come across them.