Letting Go


I thought of my mother when I saw these pictures and read the article about 73-year old Merv Jones in Grimsby, U.K.  My mother didn’t have 100 tons of stuff in her condo when she died but she was working on it.  She was a child of the depression and saved just about everything of any value, whether she used it or not.

She was afraid to throw away her junk mail because there could be a rebate check hidden in one of those envelopes and towards the end of her life she didn’t have the energy to go through all that mail every day.  After she died, I spent 2 days going through piles and piles of junk mail deciding what to do with it.  Her dining room table was piled high as were all four chairs.  She had piles on the clothes dryer as well as a card table in her dining room.  Same can be said of her writing desk and the end tables in her living room.  She donated small amounts of money to charity, so many of the envelopes were either requests for more, or they contained return address labels.  Well, you get the picture.

She also saved every piece of personal mail she received so there were years and years of cards and letters to go through.  Eventually my brother decided he wanted them so now he’ll need to find a place for them.

My mother also saved rubber bands and I had to throw away every single one of them because they had rotted and were brittle.  She didn’t keep obvious trash in her space but she covered her old console television that stopped working decades ago with a decorative sheet and used it as a stand for her working television.  I spent an entire week going through this stuff and it took my brother another couple of weeks to get everything out of the place so we could sell it.

As soon as I returned home I began going through my belongings. I’m not as bad as some because we’ve moved frequently and at some point I began making decisions about what was worth moving and what wasn’t.  Even so, I had an entire car full of stuff to donate to the Good Will and when I stopped working in 2007 I discovered craigslist and started selling even more.

I still have a few things to get rid of and am careful about what I bring into the house.  As I get older and older I know it will get harder to get rid of stuff and I certainly don’t want anyone else to have to go through the dregs of my life when I’m gone.

I also believe I’ve improved the energy in my house by ridding us of things we no longer use.  I hope someone else will get good use from them.


2 Responses to “Letting Go”

  1. It’s a reminder that I didn’t need to see! Lol!

  2. A few weeks ago I went through my closets and donated over half of my clothing and shoes to the Salvation Army. I kept thinking about it, but couldn’t bring myself to get rid of nice things, some of which had never been worn, in case I might need it. But I figure in this economy lots of women need those things to find jobs. These are hard times, going to probably get harder. I don’t have difficulty giving away things. But my neighbor sure does! I don’t have that many clothes left, but I usually end up wearing the same things over and over anyway.

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