“Everything Must Go!”

caratulas_STEELY_DAN-EVERYTHING_MUST_GO-CDWhile I continue to go through cabinets (Thank You, Lisa & Sam!!), papers, et al, the pile of what needs to be looked at is still a big one. I’ll look at contacting an estate sales person, to see what is worth anything and what is tag sale/flea market stuff. Money is money at this point, and any extra finances are helpful in the long run. Plus…

…I just want to be uncluttered.

Downstairs from me, another family is emptying out their mother’s apartment. They had many, many days posted in the building (and I’m assuming elsewhere) to sell what they could, a tag sale. Yesterday, the sign changed to: “Items still left: if you can use it, come in and take it.” That, to me, was sad. Not that they couldn’t make money off of things, but that items that made up part of the woman’s life is now just flotsam.

What makes up a memory worth keeping?

Sam, when he was down, and Lisa too, advised to not just get rid of things willy-nilly, not to make rash decisions in the effort to clean out, cleanse, uncluttered. I know I did that in the first week: it was such an arduous task before me, and the depth of emotions coursing through me just wanted it all gone. I’m glad I did what I did then, and doing it step by step now has served me well, even though it still hits me emotionally. I get to a certain point and I just can’t process any more of it.

I’ve also hit a wall in doing this work by myself: for whatever reason, I can’t bring myself to do it alone. When someone is over, I’m stirred to go through things. When home alone, I shy away from it. Something to talk about in session. Avoidance, yes. I just don’t know why.

In speaking with the Rabbi today and brought up this point. It’s still too raw for me to face all this alone. Everything must go takes on many meanings for me: I have to let go of past hurts and learn how to forgive and move on; I have to part with things that have little to no meaning to me, and even with some things that do; everything must go, eventually.



About StuHN

I am a creative individual with many areas of passion: Professional Storyteller; NYS Certified Drama Specialist/Educator; Professional Development Coordinator & Facilitator; Workshop Leader; sometime Puppeteer; Playwright; Director; Performer; Teaching Artist; and sometimes more.

Posted on March 4, 2013, in Anger, Caring, counseling, Family, Friends, Healing, Inspiration, Loneliness, Love, Meditations, Mindfulness, Therapy, Transformation, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 18 Comments.

  1. I agree- don’t be rushed into “decluttering”.. You may end up depriving yourself of a memory you want to keep.

    • No one is rushing me, which is a good thing. I have a plan to have things cleared out as best as possible by the summer. Then, hopefully, painting. Thanks Roy

  2. Portia Burton

    very sentimental.

  3. Going through someone’s life collection of belongings is hard. I have been lucky. My mum started going through her things and giving away what was valuable to her a few years ago. By the time she moved in with my sister she had very little left. I am so glad we won’t be faced with the task you are going through when mum is gone. My best and only piece of advice is to take one day and one task at a time Stuart. xx

  4. After we lost my younger brother, going through his possessions was one of the most difficult parts of processing the loss. In the end we saved very little and donated most to charity. I feel blessed to read through your posts as you write through your grief. You bring such an authentic voice to a painful experience.

    • I’m sorry for your loss: I wish I was in the position to just donate, but I do feel I did a lot of good donating her clothing to the homeless. Thank you for the kind words about my writing.

  5. De-cluttering is a life-long process. The main thing is not to let “things” overtake or control your life, or take on a life of their own. Whatever their meaning or value, they are still just things.

    • That is exactly how I’ve been feeling. There are some things that are just memory filled. The Rabbi suggested taking photos of certain items before getting rid of them.

  6. All my life I have tended to stow away keepsakes–cards letters, playbills. Who knows what’s worth keeping, it’s all so personal. Keep inviting people over to help you declutter, don’t do it alone if it’s too hard. There’s no crime in that.

    • It’s what I’m trying to do Adriene. I just know that so much is just stuff: that is the hard part, why I want to lighten the load around here.

  7. I think we’re all creatures of habit and this makes it challenging for most of us to ‘let go’, whether they be good for us or bad. Like you said, sometimes there is some strange comfort in holding on even to hurts and painful memories. I personally know that all too well. In some strange way, even these emotions have become our friends and we’ve found ourselves being comforted by their familiarity, and maybe by the fact that these too make us feel more alive (?). Perhaps.

    • Joy, what I need to do is let the hurts go. They do nothing but bring me down: they still have power over me. I don’t want them to have any hold on me anymore, just as a learning lesson of what not to do.

  8. It is difficult to know what to keep. Unfortunately, I don’t think that there is any magic recipe here. In such instances, I think that it is best to take it one day at a time. Oh, and try to make the space yours!

    • Muriel, that is what I’m trying to do. it gets easier as the days pass. There are still areas I am uncomfortable in. All in due course. As to all the stuff, I do wish I had a magic recipe/wand to just set it all right.

  9. Pain makes way for happiness. Clutter makes way for new memories.

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