Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Life Lessons: It's Just Stuff

If you haven't been keeping up or if you're new around here, we are downsizing.  Downsizing our 1700 square foot home with a huge a 1028 square foot apartment with a small patio and a carport space.  Moving day is one week from tomorrow.  And I am currently recovering from the stomach flu, but that is another story.

Every day, I walk through our house, look through our closets, sort through our toy bins and I ask questions like:

Do we absolutely love this item?

Do we use this item regularly?

Have we used this in the last year?  Will we use this in the next year?

Does this hold any emotional significance for us?

Will my life really decline in quality if I do not have this anymore?

It's freeing.  Yet it's hard.  It's just stuff, people, and I know that, but it's hard to let go.  And I guess that tells me that I really do need to let some stuff go.

Confession: I have 3 strollers.  The single stroller from my days of one child that I hold on to for the day I will once again only have one child at home.  The double jogger stroller that my in-laws bought for us that we love and use all the time, but it can't fit through a doorway so therefore we need...the sit-and-stand double stroller that holds 2 kids one in front of the other for our trips out into society that require walking through doors.

I have 3 strollers yet I'm going to have a small patio on which to store things of this nature.  So we've decided we must sell 2 strollers.  Does that really seem like a big deal to only own one stroller?  No.  And yes.  Yes, because of the letting go it requires.  We humans like to cling to things.  Letting go is hard work for us.

I don't really have anything profound to say in this post, but I think we need to make ourselves let go regularly.  It's good exercise for us.  It frees us from believing we must have all these things to be happy, successful, safe, secure, normal.  We actually convince ourselves we won't be okay without this stuff.

This may sound dramatic, but it keeps coming to my mind as I write this post.  While in Ethiopia, we visited the home of a man named Tesfaye.  He was a middle class man.  His home was literally a metal shed behind another house.  He shared this shed with his sister.  It contained one bed, two chairs, a small table.  No bathroom, no kitchen.

Yet I have three strollers.  I think I can safely say I will be okay with only one.

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