I’ve never been into accumulating things. Most of the stuff around here is the result of my ex’s shopping.

We began our marriage with my wedding ring engraved with “To my perfect ass.” At that time it was cute and was meant literally from a husband’s point-of-view. Today, as I think about what I put up with for over 25 years, the message is ominous and figurative.

Now I find myself with a flyer for a Junk in the Trunk Sale. My ass, thankfully, has not morphed into the caricature’s big rump as she bends to rearrange merchandise in the back of her car. I also find myself with a dilemma. I would say to my ex: Why don’t you take this chair? even though it wasn’t part of the Equitable Distribution agreement. Now, after he is refusing to chip in for our daughter’s college expenses, I’m wondering if, at a yard sale, that rusty spatula in the kitchen drawer could pay for 4 ½ pages of textbook.

I don’t want to feel like Scrooge’s housekeeper, stuffing my ex’s bedclothes into my truck. But, a father who cuts all ties with his wife and daughter?

As one of the women amidst the bundles of Scrooge’s belongings said: “Every person has a right to take care of themselves. He always did.”

Yes, I feel more natural being easygoing and suggesting he have this and have that.

But, unlike him, I have a daughter to take care of.

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