It was approximately 20 years ago when I invested in a pricey (at least for me at the time it was considered pricy) doll house kit. It was so exciting and held such promise as project for me to create a nostalgic heirloom I would pass down to my children and my children’s children. I had plans for little tiny lights in each room. I bought a teeny ceiling fan that worked with the same switch box the lights would be connected to. Flooring – carpet in the living room and bedroom and tile in the kitchen and bathrooms – would be carefully installed. Furniture would be purchased, or perhaps created by hand from balsa wood. I found teeny, tiny kitchen supplies including a box of cereal and a roll of tin foil that would be neatly put away once the kitchen was complete. Oh the plans I had for this special keepsake!!
Forward on to 2018, I can take credit for building the sturdy frame and painting it a beautiful country blue. I stenciled in the three dimensional bricks along the foundation in meticulous fashion. The first coat of paint was applied to the interior walls, and……. well ….. that is where the progress set for many, many years. My children grew and my grandchildren came, but now those dreams of a beautiful dollhouse to be cherished by them was faded and as dusty as the bare floors in the empty dollhouse.
Accepting that I no longer have the drive or the physical ability to attend to the pretty little home, I finally resolved to the idea of giving up. Giving up... leaves such a sour taste as those bitter words form from my mouth. It’s not who I am. How can I just give up on this beautiful vision I had so many years ago.
Time does that to us sometimes. Ideas and plans we held close to our hearts have a way to being forced to bend, reshape, sometimes even fade with the passing of time. Is this giving up? I like to think that it isn’t. I like to think that it’s adjusting to our fate and moving in the direction we were destined to from the very beginning.
In this case, with the help of my daughter, I took the partially finished doll house and, with a bit of an ache in my heart, set it on the curbside. I took the box of supplies that would be needed to complete the project, including the ceiling fan, carpet pieces and the tile sheet. It was neatly stacked with a sign on top declaring “FREE! – everything you need is here”. And I left it there on the curb, hoping it had a purpose for someone else.
It was a total of approximately ten minutes before my husband motioned to me to look towards the street. It was gone!! Already!!! It made me happy, but then a terrible thought popped in my head… firewood. What if someone just took it as garbage and planned to use it as kindling in a fire that would literally put my past efforts towards this heirloom up in smoke!?!?!
I retired to the backyard to read and get my mind off my failure to complete the project I had started so long ago. Only a few moments passed and my husband was back at my side. This time he held an envelope. Curious, I opened it and found an adorable pink card with the words “OMG OMG Lets Party!”. Hmmm, I thought, someone is having a birthday party. I was confused as to who it would be. There aren’t many children in the neighborhood and couldn’t imagine one who would be inviting us to “Party” with them. Then I opened the card and my heart instantly lifted and my eyes dampened with the threat of tears.
“Thank you for the doll house” was written on the blank, white inside of the card. This simple message gave me comfort. I hadn’t given up, I had simply passed the torch. Someone was going to take this project and continue to build it into a special little home. Perhaps a dad is going to build it together with his daughter. Maybe its a project for a stay at home mom who needs something to keep busy with while her children are going away to school. What ever the case may be, it gave my heart joy to know the project I was so excited about 20 years ago was not destined to a fire pit, but was now another person’s treasure.
I have learned that giving up is not always a bad thing. Change is difficult and letting go can be a necessary part of transitioning your life into the place you were meant to be from the very beginning. Have faith and trust in your decisions when it’s time for change in your life. If there are things you find you need to let go of in your life, take heart knowing that your ending may be another person’s beginning, and that in itself, is a blessing passed on.