Touched by loss. Empowered through community.

The Right Time

Monday, March 16, 2015
Posted By: 
Scott Bauer

Among all the other issues we all have in common is the question of “when is the right time to clean out my spouses closet?” Do you do it immediately, wait a year, two years, more? And what do you do with all the items? How many items do you keep? How many items should your children keep?

At the start, my wife’s closet was my safe haven. This was the place I could go and cry or talk to her and feel close to her. Gradually her closet became more of a “do not enter” location than anything else and I swear the door to her closet must not have been opened for more than a year. As many of you have probably confronted, I had family members and friends asking if I wanted help cleaning out Lauri’s closet. My answer was always the same, “not really.”

For no logical reason I decided the day after the two year anniversary of Lauri’s passing would be “The Day.” As with many other milestones the anticipation leading up to that day was almost unbearable and I became unhinged, unglued at the thought of her belongings no longer being in the house. But I started “the process” anyway.

Fast forward two years later – now four years after Lauri’s death. Another attempt, this time with one of my closest friends (also one of Lauri’s). Success!!! If you can call it that. We both laughed and cried and talked about how certain clothes brought back certain memories. We remembered silly times, difficult times and happy times. But now my fears starting coming back – if I get rid of these clothes will these memories also disappear?

Perhaps because I am in a better place and not because I miss Lauri any less, I actually went through with it. Bag after bag was filled with her clothes, tied up and brought to my friends car to be taken to local shelters and other needy locations.

So now? Now I still go in to her closet, sit down, and laugh and cry. I feel as close to her as I did when all her belongings were in there. This is just another one of the steps we all must take along this path. As with every decision we seem to have to make, don’t let anyone pressure or guide you into doing something that you are not comfortable with. There is no right or wrong time – the books, therapists, etc… don’t know the right time – ONLY YOU DO!!!!!!!!!!!


Wow this is amazing my husbands been gone for over Four years I have the same struggle still haven't cleaned out his Closet I also have had offers from friends and family But everytime I Open the door it's just impossible I break down shut the door And walk away!! Maybe someday soon I will have the courage To part with his things but for now I will just keep it that way!! Thank you for sharing!!

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