Hi. My name is Grumpy F., and I am a hoarder.
Have you watched Hoarders yet on A&E??? That is some crazy stuff. Some crazier than others. Some bat-shit crazier than others.
When I watch that show, my stomach hurts. BADLY. Why? Because I think I am one of them.
No, not that lady with all the rotting pumpkins and squash on her floor. I'm not anywhere NEAR that bad. But the one with boxes and bags full of stuff that she needs to "go through," but can't find the time to do it? That is me. Since she is probably 20-25 years older than I am, just imagine her house with 20-25 years less junk. Definitely me.
The Farm Boy watches that show with me. When he's being kind, he tells me I'm not as bad as some of those people. When he's being truthful, he looks at me and says, "That's you, babe." When he's being an arse, he laughs and points at me. (ok, not really)
For me, it comes down to three things:
1) I attach emotions to objects. We used to call ourselves "pack rats," as if that was a good thing. I hate rodents! But objects hold memories for me. I'm thinking maybe I just take a digital pic of those types of items, and then toss them. It might work.
2) I was taught not to waste things, and you always need empty boxes, right? And extra bags. And that last drop of perfume still in the bottle, even though you already have a new bottle. And that makeup you bought that doesn't really look good on you, but you bought it so you should use it (even though you never will) Ugh. It's a sickness.
3) I'm afraid I will need something I've just thrown away. I can't throw away the box for the blender (TV, computer, hair dryer, camera, etc.)... when we move, it will be so much easier to pack "it" in the original box. PLUS! The instructions might still be on/in the box! See? It's PRACTICAL.
Nope. It's not practical, and deep down, I know it's not. (oh, and we have no plans to move within the next 4 years or so, either)
For a lot of the people featured on this show, there are deep emotional/psychological issues. For many, organization is also a challenge. I don't know where I fit in this... I think I'm not organizationally challenged, because I know where everything is. (I know. I KNOW. WRONG.) Hopefully, the emotional/psych issues aren't too deep. I mean, recognizing that I have this problem is more than half the battle, right? I truly believe this was a learned behavior. My mother is the same way, and her mother was, too.
So, the good news is that, after watching this show, I really do feel the need to purge. (not my stomach-- the contents of our storage room, stuff lying around the house, in our room) I want to do it for myself, but I also want to do it for my family.
Now I just need to