Thursday, December 10, 2009

Material Girl

In general, I don’t think of myself as a materialistic person. Then it comes to wanting to declutter my life and I have a difficult time parting with stuff. Most of this stuff represents memories and a bit of identity for me.

Take the Closet to Blessings Exchange our small group recently had. I am rather fashion-impaired. I wear what I want to wear without much thought to whether or not pieces match or if they look good on me. I have no idea what style or color is in. I basically want to be comfortable.

Usually, to declutter, I go to the closet first. It’s relatively easy for me to get rid of clothes, so much so that for a few months, I was living off of about 5 outfits. I’ve recently began to invest in some new clothing items, piece by piece.

Still, for the Exchange, I went through my closet about 4 times. Each time I told myself I would take out more to give away, not put anything back. I went back and forth on a few items. Some items are from my “skinny” days that I hope will return one day. In the end, I was able to let go of some clothes that I was holding on to.

A few summers ago, I pared down my stuffed animals collection. It wasn’t really a collection in the way that I was the one seeking stuffed animals. I think some are cute, but I wouldn’t spend money on them. I still have a box of animals in my room, a rather large storage box of them. I’m having a difficult time giving those up and think I will go through them for the next Exchange. They are ones that friends and family have given me.

I have the two huge paper roses from Neo; one was an unexpected gift at an unexpected time and the other was for my birthday. I have a light up rose that I got from the night I met Thok.

I love reading and writing, and so I love books. I have several shelves overflowing with books. I will have to go through them when I have more time. I have a lot of CDs. I keep hardcopies of things like statements and such (what’s the rule of thumb for how many years I should keep records?).

I have stuff. I admire people who keep their houses neat and tidy. It creeps me out when they keep it too tidy, like if they can’t stand a misplaced pillow or something, but I admire the tidiness. When I see families that have lost everything in a fire or a hurricane, my heart aches for them.

I have a theory. I think if I had a better memory, I wouldn’t keep so much stuff. I keep stuff to aid my memory. Especially if something evokes a warm memory. I need help remembering those people and times.

And perhaps I can turn my photography into memory aids. I’ll get around to taking photos of the things I’d like to remember. Then I can look at the photos when I want to feel good or something. That’s what helped me get rid of more clothes, thinking back to whether I have a photo of me wearing it or not.

What kinds of things are you holding on to? Are you a “memory collector,” material person, or a light traveler?

Mahalo for reading!

[I am NEVER getting rid of Huggy Love Bear! :) ]