How do we accumulate so much stuff? My intentions had been to sort and discard papers, items, and other non-necessities before moving. Then time and sentimentality take over.
That little cracked vase that gathers dust on a what not shelf needs to go. But, that vase was given to my mother by my son. Mother cherished that vase and kept it where she could always see it.
Should I toss it?
Or what about those algebraic equations on that legal pad? More remnants of the past. Some parents of my gifted students asked me to teach their children (sixth grade, mind you) algebra. Volunteering to enroll in an adult algebra class filled me with trepidation. Mr. Weir in high school had taught it efficiently and fast. Faster than my high school brain could absorb and comprehend. But I passed, somehow.
There was no question that to teach algebra well, I had to relearn it. That yellow legal pad attests to the fun and great accomplishment I felt in relearning algebra and being able to teach it well. But, it is just paper and needs to go. Maybe I’ll have time after the move.
Right now during spring cleaning, when we are washing windows and shaking dusty rugs while listening to the lyrics of bird love songs, is a good time to unhinge ourselves from irrelevant items of the past. I keep reading about how doing that will help one spiritually.
As Rich Heffern says in Adventures in Simple Living, “It came to me while reflecting on that woodland encounter with the night that there are two very valuable spiritual gifts that simplicity gives to us. It seems the more we can strip our lives down to essentials, the more deliberately and awake we can live; with few wants and more time for silence and contemplation, the more we have access to our inner resources. The more lightly we walk on this Earth, the more she gives to us. I call these spiritual gifts inner smiling and out-goingness of the heart.”
And I agree. Ridding myself of all these heavy and cumbersome material items would definitely make for a less physically stressful move. But I am not truly sure that it will lighten the emotional stress of it.
“But you will always have the memory,” someone says.
How is it that holding an item will recall a smile on a son’s or mother’s face? Or, keeping a note from a sweetheart brings happiness when reread.
My next house is going to be humongous.
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