Last month I wrote a post about downsizing and getting ready for your overseas move. I just had an experience this weekend that really drives home the importance of trimming down, winnowing and getting rid of extra stuff — even if you’re not planning an overseas move!
My husband and I drove a couple of hours on Saturday to help out some family members. Due to changing family circumstances and medical condition, an elderly relative was being moved out of a home she had shared for some time and to the care of relatives in another state. We had volunteered to help with the packing up of her things.
We were shocked, dismayed and horrified when we walked into this particular house. It was crammed with stuff everywhere. Shelves were overflowing, piles of paper were toppling off tables and onto the floor. There was no place to sit because all the available chairs, sofa, etc., were piled with stuff. There were paths through the rubble, here and there, but navigating through the place was extremely challenging for the able-bodied, and virtually impossible for one elderly person in a wheelchair.
All the piles and piles of stuff were the property of the housemate, thank goodness, and we could leave them behind. But it certainly got us to thinking.
My husband has been having a hard time letting go of some things, including old (read, outdated) college text books that he might need again sometime for reference. On our way home, he asked, “do you think so-and-so might be interested in having those old college math texts that I’ve been keeping?”
And even though I think I’ve been doing ok at paring down, I’m going to redouble my efforts. I never want to have to base my decisions about where to live on whether I have to lug around mountains of possessions.
Christmas present to self — create some truly empty spaces in my house.