Yard sale robbery

Okay. So I wasn’t actually robbed but it felt like it.

I spent almost 6 hours out in the heat with a piece of my family’s life on display for everyone who happens to stop by to take a look. Do you know how much I made? I made $32.


What did I sell? 2 strollers, 2 CDs, 1 DVD, a box of toddler girl clothes, 4 pairs of toddler shoes, 1 toy phone, 1 diaper bag, 2 laptop bags, 1 Star Wars bank, and 1 shrug (original price $34). There was also a box of free stuff that got cleared out. In return I got $32, a sunburnt face, an upset child, and so much time wasted. Not worth it.

Now. I don’t mind so much about the money. I figured my low prices (10 and 25 cent toddler items) would move a bunch of stuff quickly. I also figured those who can’t afford buying new can have a variety of clothes for their girls to wear. Many of the people that showed up were nice. Those that didn’t seem so nice I didn’t have to interact much with them besides saying hi and bye. Although things weren’t going as well as I hoped, it wasn’t too bad.

Until she arrived.

As I was helping a lady, I saw a shiny red SUV pull up to my sidewalk. A couple got out to browse my stuff. She was wearing a pretty red skirt with a nice blouse. He was wearing a neatly pressed button-up, slacks and a tie. Yes, a tie.

They looked through the clothes hanging and I witnessed a sort of snobbishness coming from her toward the hubs and my clothes. I was taken back by this. I wondered. Why was she going to yard sales in a low-middle class community with that kind of attitude?

Then I got the answer.

She was skimming through the top layer of clothes in a large box when she came across a beautiful shrug still bearing its $34 price tag. Sure I got it on sale for half the price, but she didn’t know that. The point is, I never wore it. I bought it last year with the intention of finding the perfect outfit to go with it. Except, we needed to cut back on our spending and I didn’t get the chance. I knew we needed the extra money so I tossed it in the box hoping to make a few bucks off of it.

At first I planned to price it at $10, but after the second hour out there $5 was looking more likely. By the time she arrived, I had been out there for over four hours with less than $20 in my pocket. I was feeling low and ready to pack it up after they left.

Then I saw her looking at the shrug. Feeling the soft woven fabric between her fingers. She liked what she saw and felt enough to try it on and do a little turn after asking him his opinion. He approved. I was hopeful as I gave her my best smile.

Something in me knew from the tone of her voice that I wasn’t going to get anywhere near what I hoped for. So when she asked how much, I told her what I thought was the lowest possible price she would agree to. Three dollars.

The instant it left my mouth, I regretted it. How could I let that go for three little dollars? How could I let it go for anything less than ten? I had insulted myself by speaking those two little words. Three dollars. I wish I hadn’t said it. I wish I hadn’t left the shrug in the box in the first place. I wish I could grab it out of her hands and tell her it wasn’t for sale. But I didn’t. And do you know what her response was?

“I’ll give you a dollar.”

A MOTHER FUCKING DOLLAR!!! That’s how much she wanted to pay. I was speechless for a few seconds. I slowly sucked air in through my teeth preparing to tell her no. I wanted to tell her to keep her stupid dollar and leave. I felt so insulted and I just wanted to go inside and close the world out. This woman felt I was so beneath her that I didn’t deserve any more than a dollar. So I don’t know what possessed me to say yes when next she asked, “Yes or no?”. Actually I said, “Fine. Whatever. Just take it.”

I felt defeated. She was the disgusting icing on the icky cake. Not only did she rob me of money, but she stole something else. I was insulted by someone who thought she was better than me and I just let her. I didn’t have the strength to argue. I didn’t have the strength to be mean. I just wanted this day to be over. So I let her take it for a dollar. I should have just told her she could have it.

“Better yet, let me give YOU a dollar. Why would anyone like you have to pay for my junk?”

Yesterday someone stole pieces of my pride and confidence and I realized there was one more thing I wasn’t good at that I needed to add to my list. Bargaining. This was my first and last yard sale. I never want to invite random people to my home to look down on me again. Ever.

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Blogging directly from the Mama Stony's Mental Institute. I have a husband, two young daughters, and two cats. The five of them combined is like a typhoon that wreaks havoc on my nerves. For some, that's all that is needed in order to understand why I've almost completely lost my mind. For the rest, here's a slightly lengthier explanation: I strive for organization, while my little family is pure chaos. Just trying to keep up with the housework they produce is overwhelming and intense for me. It's a daily battle with myself to keep my anxiety from shooting through the roof and exploding all over the place. Some days are easier, but most are not. Even though I'd like to, I avoid putting on make-up, spending more than 10 minutes on my hair, ironing, and accessorizing because it takes too much time and I could be using that time being productive elsewhere. Despite everything I do, at the end of each day I usually feel like I could have done more. I'm a workaholic without a job. I'm a story-teller without an audience. I hate being alone, but spend most of my days without much adult interaction. I'm artistically driven but not very creative. I want to do more but already have too much to do. And yes. I do frequently burst into song and dance.

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