What can we reasonably take care of?
It is a tricky dance we are doing right now. Or a balancing act of sorts. On one hand we know how much physical space we have to store all our possessions. But we are not sure if we can fit everything we own into that space. More importantly, do we want to pack away everything we have in the house right now? Can we get rid of more things that we wouldn’t miss and don’t want to maintain anymore?
There is a different way of looking at every item in my possession. Each thing needs to be placed somewhere, cleaned, possibly fixed and may eventually need to be disposed of. With this very clinical lens, it is a wonder we keep anything in our homes. Except, under the KonMari method, we feel best when we surround ourselves with what is useful or what brings us joy. Sometimes, special items might check off both boxes.
Months ago, I completed a sweep through the house, under the guidance of ‘The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up‘. It was a life changing experience to be sure. We got rid of an amazing amount of stuff and not once have I wished for any of it back. But I held back from fully touching on every category. The personal items which are too emotionally charged, I couldn’t even sort through, let alone discard anything.
I think I am still holding onto a bunch of memories wrapped around my stuff that I have been reluctant to part with. Framed photos and storage boxes of printed photos have not been dealt with. Old stereo equipment that doesn’t work very well anymore and I don’t know where to have it repaired. Even the act of looking around the room I am sitting in and asking how much of this do I want to keep, is tiring.
The fact is, I am still a little stuck. Intellectually, I understand the responsibility I am taking on, each time I accept an item into my life. But my habits of the past 15 years in this house, are so deeply ingrained that I forget to choose differently. I get rid of a few things, but stop short because a single item seems insignificant in the grand scheme. Before I know it, I’ve changed hardly anything by keeping the status quo. (So much easier!)
Today, I’m going after the concept of cleaning and maintenance. After spending the better part of a day cleaning my Traeger, (which was a disgusting, dirty job as well), I am ready to spend less time slaving for my things. I know I’ll be free from it on our trip, but I’m kind of scared of packing up. So much stuff which I am holding onto under a sense of obligation. If I was to think about buying any of it, new from the store, I’m not sure if most of it would make the cut.
It is another rainy day in the neighbourhood. Unseasonably cool, dark and gloomy. Or maybe that is just my mood. These kind of days, when big decisions need to be made about so many small things, kind of take the wind out of my sails. Like the practice of exercise, I know it will feel great when I start to see results. Making the commitment, following through, those are the tough bits.