How to Clean Out a Life
Part of me thought that taking the scenic route on going through mom’s things was all a part of paying tribute. I often caught myself thinking, “well, let me think about this item overnight, and I’m sure I’ll have an answer in the morning.” But the truth was, maybe I would have an answer, and maybe I wouldn’t. Furthermore, I also wasn’t going home and spending the entire night thinking about said item – I was spending the night resting from the emotional exhaustion that is grief.
What I found was that the more items I put on the mental back burner, the more likely I was to go to the storage unit the next day and get rid of EVERYTHING
I saw, because I couldn’t stand being in the middle of the stuff anymore. I had to remind myself to trust my instincts. I had to start trusting that if I truly wasn’t supposed to get rid of something, I would have a gut reaction to it when I saw it – one way or the other. It’s okay to know what you want to do with something, even if it means you’re getting rid of an item you know meant a lot to your loved one. For the items that meant a lot to them – maybe don’t sell it on Craigslist or eBay. Can you find an auction site that caters to lovers of that particular treasure? Possibly even ask friends or family if they’re interested? Then you’ll know it’s going to someone else that can appreciate it. Just allow yourself the grace of knowing that it is okay that you don’t sit on that decision for weeks on end if you don’t really need to. Don’t equate longevity with tribute, when you could be spending more of your time doing things that actually pay tribute.