Purging

 

Let’s talk about stuff!I Do you feel happy in your living space?

I never did.

From the start of the time my husband and I began living together, we somehow inherited stuff. My Mother would show up with a painting or a carpet, with a story, and somehow I had to be grateful that I got a fancy carpet from a far off land, or a painting from a street artist in Mexico who my parents adored and bought 6 paintings from. My in-laws would show up with a chair, or a whole sideboard that my husbands grandfather had built, and well, it didn’t fit anywhere else, so we were supposed to house it.

All of these things, began adding up. We packed our 2 bedroom apartment and moved west. We purged once. Then it started again. We began collecting, collecting, I am not sure what, but with baby, dog and new hiking adventures, our tiny 2 bedroom condo swelled. We then got a storage locker!

The storage locker housed antiques (that damn lady’s chair went there), and so did a whole china set. As our son went through stages, his stuff went into storage… Then, we decided to move back east. We purged again, but I don’t think the purging went well. We moved with a full 20 foot container.

We were excited to move into a house, and finally have space. Then it happened. One trip to Ikea, and the house began to fill again. My Mother started arriving with paintings, and odd pieces of furniture. My in-laws could drive to us, and began giving us a chair here, a chair there. Our house became the dumping ground of crap no one else wanted, including us, but we were supposed to be grateful that we had a chair to sit on, or a chair to stare at.

We moved again. This time, we couldn’t purge, and we moved into an even bigger house. Shelves filled, we inherited more stuff, and somewhere, I got more anxiety, and hated the space.

We needed to change.

As I looked around the house, nothing reflected us, our personalities, or what we were about. We had antiques, Ikea furniture, odd bedding, books, pewter picture frames… it just seemed endless. With all that stuff, we missed out on a couple of trips, because well, we bought stuff instead of experiences.

Since we were renting, we thought 4 years of this is enough. We were done being surrounded with crap.

In a haze, I started dumping things in the middle of the room. I didn’t want to be surrounded by a past that wasn’t mine, or other people’s guilt of not keeping things.

The more stuff we began to get rid of. The more free I felt, the happier and lighter I became. I simply wanted to start over.

We decided to move into a tiny 1956 bungalo, and bring everything that made us happy, nothing more. So far, I have 2 weeks left of purging one house and moving into the the other. In total, we have made 25 trips to Salvation Army, and had one load go to a neighbour, and one load go to Habitat for Humanity.

I am stunned with what we are left with.