Christmas was good to me. I accumulated just enough new stuff to perpetuate my belief in Santa and nothing that I didn’t like or won’t use.
Until the recent economic downturn, much of my life was about acquiring more stuff, and then stressing over how to keep and house all the stuff. As my income grew less, my prayers were for more. Not to get ahead. I’d long given up on that. But just to break even, to keep all the balls in the air, the cage wheel spinning on a lifestyle I really haven’t been able to afford since
was in office. Clinton
This past year a dear friend lost her job and her home and was forced to downsize to what would fit into two small rooms and a storage locker. It turned out to be a positive move, granting her the peace of mind to reinvent herself in ways she couldn’t have known while living in constant turmoil. I admire the strength it took for her to do this and, surprisingly, I found that a part of me was even a bit envious.
There’s something appealing about “traveling light,” mostly the ability to dodge and weave when life lays a right hook on you. The answer to my prayers had been there all along. I just hadn’t been listening.
How nice to see that along with sagging boobs, a failing memory and an overactive bladder, age also brings with it at least a modicum of wisdom. Better late than never.
So 2011 will be the year of the shedding of the shit – and I have closets full. One holds old tax returns and receipts going back to 1990. It also holds my coats if I could only get to them.
What is supposed to function as a linen closet overflows with wrapping paper and gift boxes bought on sale because you never know. Dig deeply enough and you’ll also find my old collection of 1960’s 45s and LPs. Anyone wanting any Bobby Darin albums – speak up now. Frankie Avalon is also well-represented. What you’ll be hard-pressed to locate in there is a wash cloth.
There are drawers in my house that I haven’t opened in years, clothes that probably looked great when I was 30, some with the tags still on them, and stacks of self-help books from the 80s including “Smart Women, Foolish Choices.” I could have written that one.
I have two printers, neither of which works, an ancient “Mr. Coffee,” and electric curlers that I’ve been loathe to part with because the bouffant could come back and, always the style icon, I wanted to be prepared.
Gone. All of it.
In this time of economic turmoil with our policies continuing to favor the rich and no likely way that I’m going to join their ranks, it seems prudent to make other plans. I want to be able to quickly adapt to changing circumstances or take advantage of opportunities that may present themselves.
This paring down to a new leaner life as I coast into my later years is kind of an exciting venture – like packing only what I need for a trip I’m preparing to take. And who knows? I may turn up anywhere.
Got a room to rent?