The past few weeks in this high desert city of Santa Fe, New Mexico, temperatures
soared from the sixties to the eighties. Spring suddenly turned into Summer. Along with newly blooming roses, colorful signs for neighborhood garage sales began popping up. Like many others, I’d been saving all manner of possessions to “repurpose” them after our long, cold winter ended.
Yep, you guessed it — I decided to join neighbors in staging a two-day yard sale. It happened last weekend. Labeling, putting up signs and balloons, advertising in local papers, schlepping everything over to my friend’s house…it was a ton of work. True, a lot sold and I made a decent amount of money. Toward the end of the sale, I simply gave a lot away. We all did. But, to be honest, it was exhausting and ridiculously time-consuming. I vowed to quit letting stuff creep into my house.
Every possession, it’s been said, is a responsibility. Even after the recent sale, I still have too many books, clothes, shoes, housewares, books, office supplies, garden supplies…too much of EVERYTHING.
Writing my adoption memoir The Goodbye Baby-A Diary about Adoption gave me
the reality check I needed. It was so liberating to review four decades of past emotional “baggage” and then burning the diaries themselves, I realized that my too-much-stuff problem could also be tackled. The late diaries went up in smoke, and that gave me courage. It was OK to get rid of something that had once been precious. In publishing my “diary book,” I’d saved the essence of those journals, which was all I needed: First the diaries, then the house and everything in it. There is no turning back.
Nature abhors a vacuum; my perpetual need to purge is living proof. But, I will gain the upper hand! Just as I’ve replaced my old negative thinking about adoption (healthy acceptance is the aim), I’m revising my attitude toward possessions. De-acquisition-ing is my new goal. Divesting. Streamlining. Simplifying.
Less time organizing and caring for things and more time to simply LIVE. I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again:
*Use it or LOSE it. *LESS is MORE. *Empty is BEAUTIFUL