Knowing when it’s time to say goodbye, not because I don’t love – but because I do

Listening to our piano say goodbye: Letting go of family heirlooms

There is something unbearably sad about a silent piano. It was time to let a new family find music and joy in ours.

In 1998, four years into my life as a single mother, I bought a used upright piano for my daughter. It’s the closest I’ve ever come to feeling like I could fly.

For two years, from age 9, Cait had talked about wanting to learn how to play the piano. She usually spoke about it in whispers, as if she were talking to hovering angels who maybe could make it happen. I made a point of never talking to her about money concerns, but she could read the map of worry of her mother’s face.