A poor woman who nursed her old father receives only a tiny room from him after his death. Her stepsister and stepmother ridicule her for it, but the two evil women soon learn they made a big mistake.
“If he loved his blood child, he would never have left her something so insignificant.”
“You were a fool to care for him in his final days. I knew looking after that oldie was pointless…but not so pointless if you consider the house he left us!”
“Go to your room and don’t even think of touching anything else in this house! It’s OURS now!”
Gloria exhaled a sigh. “I don’t care what your rotten brains think of my father. I knew him better than you!” she told her stepmother and stepsister. “You’ll regret it someday…what you’re doing right now. Mark my words!”
Gloria was a 30-year-old woman who worked at a cheap motel. She cared for her elderly father, Andrew, in his final days while her stepmother, Cindy, and stepsister, Amelia, had left him to die. Andrew was diagnosed with cancer and confined to the bed.
Andrew adored Gloria. She knew that. She knew she was her father’s princess. Always. So she wasn’t angry when she learned from his lawyer that she’d only inherited a tiny room in their house while her stepsister and stepmother had received the rest. She accepted her share with gratitude.
‘Not all that glitters is gold, and one man’s trash can be another man’s treasure!’
But seeing Gloria unbothered irked Amelia and Cindy. They taunted and mocked her. They wanted to see the pain in her eyes—the pain of being left with nothing despite caring for a loved one. But Gloria didn’t give them that chance.
The little room, which was now hers, was where Andrew kept his “treasure.” He loved collecting anything antique from the flea markets and online sales, which would become a part of his collection. And he hunted for treasure in the trash every weekend until his health failed, and he was confined to bed.
Cindy never understood his passion for the old things. “That garbage isn’t doing you any good. Why would you even waste money and time on it?”
Andrew would grin. “All that glitters isn’t gold, honey,” he would say, “and one man’s garbage is another man’s treasure. You won’t get it.”
That would piss Cindy off. “The money you spend on those things could be used for house repairs, Andrew!” she would snarl. “The roof needs repairs, and the kitchen pipes are leaking, but you splurge the money on your stupid hobby! Great!”
Over the years, Cindy and Andrew had numerous disagreements about his collection, but Andrew did not give up his hobby. He loved his collection, which he proudly called treasure.
As Gloria looked around his room, those memories flashed before her eyes. She found herself smiling before she realized it. “Dad was crazy for this stuff. I wish we had more time together,” she thought. Then she realized she was in trouble.
The small room was a mess. There was dust in every nook and corner of the space. If nothing else, it needed a good cleaning. Gloria knew it would take a while. Six months ago was the last time the room was cleaned. And that was before Andrew was bedridden.
Gloria grabbed a broom and a wiping cloth. She started cleaning the floors, and while she was at it, she found her old doll. “Oh gosh!” she cried happily. “I had no idea Dad had kept it! I thought Cindy had thrown away all my childhood toys!”
Gloria wiped the doll with a cloth. Then her attention was drawn to a small messy stitch behind it. That confused her.
“As far as I remember, it didn’t have a stitch!” she told herself as she untied the loose thread strands. She was surprised as she finished. Inside the doll was a note, which read:
“Look under the carpet.
“Woah, dad hid a note here? Why?” she wondered.
Gloria was confused until she hadn’t cleared the floor and removed the carpet. Because under the rug, she found a trapdoor, which she didn’t know about. She pulled the latch on it, and a set of stairs leading down to a secret room revealed itself.
Gloria descended the steps and was stunned. It led to a small chamber with hardly enough room for one person to stand. She found an antique tin box and noticed a letter from her father taped to the bottom of the box. She opened the letter and began reading:
I hope you don’t despise me because of what I did. I am sorry, honey. I didn’t want to hurt you. I was actually saving you from your stepsister and stepmother. I’m aware of how cruel they are.
They fooled me into putting the house in their name, and I was well aware of its consequences. But when I signed the papers, I was concerned about you, so I was determined to leave you enough to help you get by.
When a parent nurtures their child, they do so out of love and without expecting anything in return. But what you did for me was way more than what I did for you as a parent. I remember how exhausted you’d be after work, but you’d sit with me for hours until I fell asleep. I consider myself fortunate that I had a daughter like you.
Inside this box is what should help you when I’m gone. ‘Not all that glitters is gold, and one man’s trash can be another man’s treasure!’ Remember how often I used to say it?
I sold some antiques in my collection and saved this for you. Open the box with a smile.
When Gloria finished reading the letter, tears were streaming down her cheeks like a waterfall. “I never hated you for anything, dad. I loved you, and I always will!” she sobbed. Then with trembling hands, she opened the tin box and stood stunned.
“Oh, dad…” Gloria whispered. “I can’t believe this!”
Inside the box were thick bundles of cash — $50,000 in total — and another small note: “Live your life without regrets. That’s my only wish.”
And Gloria honored her father’s wish. She started fresh and moved to a new house, leaving Amelia and Cindy behind.
“You can’t keep that money!” Cindy had lashed out when she learned about the stash, but it was all for naught.
Now whenever Gloria visits Andrew’s grave, she sits beside him for hours, talking about how thankful she is and how she is doing much better in life. “…Thank you, dad. I love you. I’ll get more roses the next time. Promise,” she tells him every time. Andrew loved roses.
What can we learn from this story?
- A parent will never leave their child in trouble. Andrew knew his wife and stepdaughter would trouble Gloria after his death, so he left her enough to help her survive.
- One man’s trash can be another man’s treasure. Andrew’s collection, which Cindy described as trash, was actually rather valuable, and it helped his daughter start a new life.