Saturday, July 1, 2017

Life, Death, and Clutter. What will you leave behind?

I have been thinking a lot about all the stuff I have accumulated over my adult life time. I was never good about letting go of things even as a child.

For some, it starts at a young age with the need to collect little things of no real value. For me it was colorful plastic picks that came in the center of my parents steak, you know the ones that say 'Well Done', 'Medium', 'Rare' etc. Or those toothpicks with the cute little curly ribbons on the end of them. Collecting things like that as a kid can be the beginning of a life of saving stuff you do not need.

It is all about balance. Save things that are useful or that have special significance. A ticket stub from your first date. A child's first drawing. Family heirlooms. Things like that. Items that only will take up a box and maybe a book filled with treasures.

I first wanted to clean things out of my own house after my grandparents died several years ago. Seeing all the tons of stuff left behind and the strain left on the family to go through it all.

I put it off and now it is hard to clean with my disabilities. I have to do it in small bursts on days I feel able too. And even at that rate I will be in extreme pain after cleaning a little bit. So do it now while you have more energy. Even if you lack time, do a little each week or month.

I want to be able to keep the things with the most special meaning. But for now I try to just focus on getting rid of the clutter to feel better and if something happened to me there would not be the amount of junk to go through for my surviving family. All that may sound morbid but I look at it as practical not not being morbid. We all die at some point. Some sooner than others. Nothing wrong with being prepared. This way they can find things they would like to have like family photos.

If you have things you need to part with when clearing out the clutter from your home. Please donate or recycle as much as you can to reduce what goes into the landfills. Many of those places give funds to charity. The one I go to helps people gets jobs.

I am fascinated by the tiny house movement. I am picky in the style I would want though. No lofts or a ton of stairs inside or out. And a garage would be a must.

I would love the talent and skills needed to design house plans for smaller homes for those that want their own place but a better and safer way to get around in them without it screaming out they are disabled or elderly making them a possible victim of thieves driving by. What does this have to do with my theme here? Downsizing. And not collecting any more junk. Passing on advice to those younger not to keep things they will never use nor find important later on. Keep things of sentiment. But not everything. Just the most special. Back up digital photos on multiple hard drives and keep one with a family member or a trusted friend that lives in another location, or in a bank deposit box.

Once again it is all about balance. Keep what you need or cherish, what you do not - find it a good home. And stop collecting stuff! Set a better example to those who are younger.

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