Thoughts On Leaving
If you ever doubt the wisdom of divesting yourself of possessions, spend 5 days in your parent's house trying to figure out what to with all the junk. Garages full of junk, spare bedrooms full of junk, basements full of junk--well, nobody in far West Texas has basements, but you get the point. Papa Kvatch has one whole room filled with boxes containing every paperback he's read in the last 4 decades. And his reason for keeping these packages of concentrated allergens? "I might want to read them again someday." Right Dad. Whatever you've got to tell yourself.
Oh sure...it may not be your problem to deal with now, but it will be, and I'm pretty sure that aside from finding the rare family treasure, nobody likes having to deal with a house full of junk after the death of a parent. So I'm here to tell you, whittle your life down now. While you still have time, decide what's really important, preserve it and get rid of the rest. I'm not saying be a monk...exactly...but definitely learn to live with less. You'll be happier, and your children will be way happier.
"In this phase of life, the person develops vairāgya, or a state of determination and detachment from material life. He renounces all worldly thoughts and desires, and spends the rest of his life in spiritual contemplation."
You cant take it with, they say.
My dad had some interesting stuff that would have set my mom up for life if the religious fanatics that she hung with at the time hadn't taken everything to the junkyard. Things like the first twenty years of Playboy, with all the important issues. He had a collection of 8mm movies, one of which whose tag line was "Barbra Streisand as you've never seen her before". It was from the fifties. Gotta love those fundamentalists.
Since my diagonosis this week with PBC, I'm starting to think about what I do and do not need. This post is timely. While my disease isn't necessarily fatal, it is going to shorten my life a bit - and so I need to not do to my kids what my mother did. Timely post, Kvatch.
The only thing I really miss are the books, which are still in storage. A few special books are my concession, and I curse them when I have to carry the bags.
Happy New Year, Frogman, Bolgnonymites!
Thats 10 years come July 1, 2007 and I keep meaning to start going through them and throwing out what I truly don't need.
Only problem is I never seem to have the time. Maybe I better start making it soon as I'm not getting any younger and I really don't feel like moving it all again if I have too.
Good post though and it really makes one think about what's really important in ones life.
excellent and concise post!
I spent too much time with family this season. And too many family members are getting old and are ill
But trying to get them to part with their crap is nearly impossible.
"It might be worth something...someday..."
Coming from a family of packtrats, I started off being a packrat. I used to drag all my crap with me from Apt to Apt and rented room to rented room all through college until I decided one day I just didn't need this shit.
I haven't turned back. I am constantly throwing shit away.
One problem though, as soon as I throw a bunch of shit away more shit mysteriously shows up (usually fromm relatives trying to pawn their shit off on me)
I have a rule now with my family "I DON'T WANT YOUR SHIT!"
Oh yeah, and all that paperwork your saving for God knows what? Shred it and toss it.
10 year old utility bills and tax papers? Fucking get rid of it.
There is nothing worse than having to go through boxes and boxes of paperwork decding what can just be tossed, what needs to be kept, and what needs to be shredded.
It's literally hours upon hours of work.
And because the world is full of identity theiving fucks, you can just toss it out like we should be able to.
Another handy thing is to go camping in a remote location (preferably the desert during spring), bring your shit, and burn it in a huge bon fire
After my dad died in August, Mom was itching to get rid of lots of stuff. She and I have been working at it gradually, and it is daunting. As we go through boxes and boxes and drawers and closets at mom's house, we keep finding all kinds of treasures. A common comment from Mom: "So THAT's what happened to that thing!" It is truly amazing. My dad was also OCD, but never diagnosed as such... he was a collector and packrat of the highest order, but to his credit he sold his gun and antique tool collections before he died, so that Mom and I wouldn't have to deal with people trying to bilk us, get excessively-good deals at our expense, etc., and so we wouldn't have to go through all 300 tools or all 25 rifles and try to price them. Now there about a thousand CDs to go through, several thousand books, all kinds of tools in Dad's shope, and too much other stuff to consider. It will take years, and I am sure some of it will still be there to sort once Mom is gone.
Great post, K. It truly can be daunting! Mind-boggling, too!
Hope you had a good New Years Eve..and I want to wish you all the happiness you can handle for the new year my fav frog.
Since then I've been pretty tough on myself with stuff, realizing that I don't need it.
My wife is another story, but she is making an effort for me.
P.S. My grandmother has 4 full size storage units (that we know of) packed to the ceiling, plus 2 full houses of stuff. Famous quote with translation:
"Just a couple of boxes" means living room waist high in boxes.
You get the picture.