“MOM, what is it with you and outdoor storage sheds?,” my daughter, Kris, asked me while I imagined her rolling her eyes. [Yes, I call my daughter “Kris” sometimes.]
I have several storage sheds in my backyard. My current home in Virginia does not have a garage, so I have added a shed (or 2 or 3) for storage of outdoor lawn equipment, lawn mowers (yes, that’s plural), leaf blowers, a snow blower, generator, pet crates, … ok, I’ll stop now but you get the drift.
Although I like to tell myself that I’m a big fan of being prepared and that’s why I have so much stuff, the truth is probably closer to I have a bit of an “accumulation” problem.
My late husband was one of those men who worried that an item he really, really liked would break and not be available for replacement. (A Hotshot single cup water heater comes to mind.) Hence, he would buy two. Of everything.
I sometimes followed suit. No necessarily two of the same item, but definitely one of every color of the same item (i.e. Tignanello handbags) if I really, really liked it. I also would buy varying sizes of clothing that looked good on me. Menopause, aging, and post brain tumor have caused major fluctuations in my weight and subsequently clothing sizes.
Now back to my daughter and her visits (which unfortunately hasn’t happened since the Covid-19 outbreak). I have hidden stuff. Not necessarily on purpose. I just tuck things away in hidden nooks and crannies.
I buy storage containers, shelving, compression bags, and space saver hangers and gadgets. When all else fails, I add another storage shed for the overflow.
Now that I am recently retired and planning to move to Pensacola later this year, I am currently attempting to downsize and purge most of (some of?) same stuff.
I am not as ruthless as my daughter such as when she “cleaned out” my kitchen following my brain surgery in December. (In all fairness, I did give her the green light but I must admit I was more than a little out of it when I agreed.)
I have discovered hidden gems and yes, lots of junk in the process. Before Virginia’s shelter in place order, I made lots of donations to Goodwill, VA Vets, Lost Dogs Rescue, and the Salvation Army.
My house is now in chaos with little semblance of order. Livable, but lots of ongoing projects. My cats and senior Golden Retriever don’t know what to make of my about-face.
As much as it pains me to get rid of, or sell for pennies, my possessions upon which I spent more money than I care to admit to myself and maybe even never used or even wore (yes, I have many clothes with the tags still on), I recognize that I will never be able to move from my home of thirty years without the Great Purge.
So I am keeping my eye of the prize: getting to live closer to my only child, begin a new chapter in my life called Retirement, and hopefully make some new friends, take on some new challenges and hobbies, champion new local causes, and maybe even reinvent myself a little along the way.
But who am I kidding? Kris threatened to ban me from within a 100 mile radius of her if I brought even one of my storage sheds with me.
Mama “Purging So I Am Allowed to Move to Pensacola” Terry
P.S. Kris has started recording daily Facebook videos that you may want to check out sometime. I’m learning a lot about what I should be doing to get my own affairs in order now while I am still healthy enough to do so.