When you take a moment to actually assess which of the things you own you actually use, you’ll find that you don’t use a surprising amount of it. Often, you won’t be able to remember the last time you did use that item. So it was with us a few weeks ago as we started getting ready to have a garage sale to pay off some of the enormous medical bills we’ve received from Liam’s surgery. We ended up filling our garage from front to back with the stuff we had accumulated that we really no longer needed.
We got rid of a futon that was awkwardly placed, a desk that we only used to store other things we didn’t use, and a china cabinet that we not only didn’t much care for, but was a magnet for clutter. We pared down our movies and books to those we actually wanted. I’m even in the process of selling off my old NES, SNES, and Gamecube because I don’t use them and can play those games on a Wii instead, getting rid of a veritable mountain of old consoles and cartridges. It seems like we kept items around because of emotional attachment or the idea that someday, we’d find a use for it. Well, it’s just stuff. Stuff doesn’t really matter. “The stuff you own ends up owning you.”
What does matter is that we now have a guest room we can actually walk through. We have a gaming room that feels like it, not like a dumping ground for things we can’t bring ourselves to be rid of. Our downstairs closet can actually be walked through without attempting to reenact scenes from Cirque du Soleil. In short, our house is much more functional as a home instead of a storage unit we live in.
We’re by no means done de-cluttering. There’s a lot left over from the yard sale that we’re still trying to purge. I’m sure that once that’s done, we’ll find yet more that needs to be dumped. For now, though, I’m enjoying that we’ve reclaimed the house.