Thursday, April 24, 2008

Saying goodbye to a special part of Jeff

I donated Jeff's clothes (and kept some), given away mementos (and kept some) divided up his favorite things with the kids (and kept some) and put some of my favorite keepers in a trunk.

About three weeks ago, however, I said goodbye to very special part of my husband's life -- his comic book collection. When I met him, his routine on Friday's would be to go to the local comic book store after work and get the comics that the owner was holding for him in his 'cubby' there. He probably spent a few hundred each month. He loved his comic books -- I couldn't touch them the wrong way, had to put them back in the right sleeve and couldn't tap the top because it jeopardizes the value of the comic book. He would talk about the storylines although I knew nothing about it. He read each and every one, sometimes multiple times.

When he died, I swore that these comic books would go to my son. I tried several times to get my son hooked on them, but it just wasn't his thing. So I kept them in (the correct) boxes and stored them. I even tried to Ebay some of them, but trying to sell thousands of comic books online was an arduous task. I knew nothing about comic books and even though the books told you a little, it was just too much. So, again, they sat.

Then a close friend's brother reminded me of his love for comic books. It's a bigger love than my husband had and he asked to see the collection. It wasn't too old and there were some gems here and there, but he wanted it. He wanted to buy Jeff's entire collection. I didn't know what to do. It's like giving away such a big part of him and although I had thought about it before, I wasn't sure how I'd react when I finally got an offer.

If it had been anyone else, I wouldn't have sold them. But I knew they were going into the right hands. I knew they would be cared for the way Jeff would want them cared for. I knew the time it would take me to do this on my own just wasn't feasible for me. I knew I was ready and knowing that they were going to someone who would treat them right, made my decision a comfortable one.

So I sold them -- more than 2000 comic books. And I felt weird when the boxes left the house. And I cried a little later that night -- not because I regretted my decision, but because I felt like I grieved for another part of Jeff all over again. I miss him. I miss the comic books not being here and I miss seeing him with that little boy excitement when he got his most recent batch and couldn't wait to get home to read them. I wish one of my children had been interested, but I can't make them. We sat and talked about this decision before I made it. I wanted to know if they wanted the comics. I wanted to know how they felt -- were they going to come back to me one day and say, "Mom why did you sell them? I wish you hadn't." I told them this was their chance. I needed to know. And although they were young, they made the decision that they were ready too. They looked at them and read a bit of them, but it was time and they were content with their decision.

There's a big space where the comics used to be. No matter what I fill it up with, I'll know what used to be there and X-Men (his favorite) will always be part of my heart. Oh, one of these days I'm going to take a photo of the superhero artwork he used to do. He has a huge X-Men painting that looks incredibly real. I look forward to sharing them with you.

Thanks for listening,

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