I grew up with two parents who are
borderline hoarders rather extreme pack rats, and so, I’ve been battling this “demon” for most of my adult life. My parents—to this day—have magazines from the 80s on their shelves, canceled checks from my deceased uncle’s account (he died in 2002) in the desk, and random keys, screws, and thing-a-ma-jigs scattered about the kitchen counter.
When Chris and I first married, we battled this tendency of mine frequently. I remember getting behind on my newspaper reading, allowing past issues to pile in the corner. I had every intention of going through all 20 or so papers, page by page. But, it didn’t happen. Chris was ready to recycle them; I protested. We finally decided that to avoid these arguments, the best thing to do was cancel the newspaper subscription.
See, I firmly believed that those papers contained valuable information that I was missing. Books, papers, and magazines have always represented knowledge to me. And knowledge is one of my greatest pursuits. I really have to “limit” myself to certain amounts of paper or it will overtake me.
The other night, the woman on the show walked into a scrapbook store and bought a few items for her scrapbooks: stickers, papers, and so on. She mentioned that she had been “scrapbooking” for about eight years and had only done one page—BUT she had mountains and mountains of supplies. She said that she enjoyed the acquisition of the items and the possibilities that they represent.
Her words smacked me in the forehead: the acquired items represent possibilities. Most often for me the possibilities are much more exciting than the reality.
Anyway—it scared me to identify so closely with her sentiment, especially given my background, and because I have no idea how to get around the way I look at the world and things.
The only thing I do know is that I don’t want to be featured on Hoarders in a few years.
photo: Morgue File