Hi, my name is Kelli and I am a hoarder.
I am not an ordinary hoarder. I am an emotional hoarder with OCD. This means that instead of piles of stuff all over the house I have things neatly tucked away in baskets and binders. I have found elaborate systems to keep ‘stuff’ I or my family might need ‘organized.’
Don’t get me wrong, there is a method to my madness.
My family binders are organized by household category. That could be ‘Kelli’ or ‘Cars’. Anything related to the category is tabbed and placed neatly in the binder. I try to go through the binders each year to purge things that to be shred. Note that I did not say toss out. Clearly, my OCD does not let me throw out (seemingly) important papers. Nope, said papers must be discarded in the most secure way possible.
Generally, I am proud of my organizing tools and processes. As we are preparing to sell our home my systems are highlighting how much stuff I have to think about and release.
But it is sooooooo emotional for me. What if I need my husband’s explanation of benefits from 2011? What if I do not have the 12 years of shot records for my dog when we switch vets?
You see I have issues 🙂
I did not know that my emotional problems included stuff. In fact, I’m so organized about my stuff that my friends give me kudos for my filing system instead of ‘checking’ me about my inability to let stuff go.
This whole process of downsizing means that some stuff can’t go to our new home. I thought the stuff would be clothes in my closet that are too small or out of style. Nope, of course God uses the experience to teach me a deeper lesson. Now I get to go through the important paperwork of our family and release all the emotions that the pages hold. Illnesses. Vacations. Education. I even have a binder for family drama I wouldn’t dare blog about.
Like most of us, I assumed that my husband and children (who no longer live at home) would have the hardest time. Of course, I was wrong. It will be me. I will be processing dreams fulfilled and deferred. The end of my children’s adolescence and the tender transition to adulthood. The re-commitment to my marriage as my first priority. Even the death of a family dog.
I know without a doubt that the process will be for my benefit. Releasing stuff now will allow me to be free during this transition. Some ‘stuff’ — and the emotions that are attached to it — are better left in this house. I want our new home to be open to new memories, new experiences and new dreams.