Compulsive hoarding is a mental disorder that is just beginning to be understood. As a hoarder, I have acquired things over the years with a specific purpose in mind at the time of the acquisition, used some of those items for their intended purposes, forgotten the goal for different objects, but now that I find that they have outlived their purpose in my life I am struggling to rid myself of those same things.

You can read the start of my journey here.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Jitters. What jitters?

Today was sort of an off day. I wasn't able to get started on the porch until late afternoon, but I'm satisfied with the little bit accomplished in that the two hours or so we were out there.

We had a huge stack of laminate shelves that someone had gotten for us and dropped off a few years ago. We'd initially looked at them when they were for sale thinking they'd be great for storage in the garage, but we decided against getting them. A short time later, they were put up on a free group online, and we decided to pass on getting them.

In the meantime, an acquaintance saw the online posting and decided to pick them up and surprise us. Let's just say they did a good job. We were definitely surprised, and not necessarily in a good way, but we didn't know how to tell them we didn't really want the shelves after all. Then we had to find a place to store them. And they'd been in the garage for a few years before we moved them to the porch about 2 years ago.

Right now, over half of them (33 total) are sitting at the curb waiting to be picked up and taken away. I put them up on Craigslist, and someone will be here in the morning to get them. I have backup names, should they not show, so it will be nice to get them out of here. There are still 26 shelves that are slightly bigger than the ones that are pending pickup that we decided to keep and use.

Then, when I was writing this post, I got another email from the 2nd person on the list to pick up the shelves. They asked, if maybe they could split the amount of shelves with the other person, (I'd stated that they all had to go to one person in my ad). And I realized that in all reality, I have no idea when, or, if we'll ever use the shelves that were still on the porch. Plus, I have such mixed emotions when I see them.

I see their potential. I could use them to organize the laundry room a bit better. Or we could use them to organize the garage and get stuff up off the floor and on the wall instead. We could make them at a height that we'd be able to see everything that was on them in a glance, and it would make life easier on us. So I planned every time I'd see the pile of them sitting there.

But they also make me think of the person who picked them up and surprised us with them, and I don't like to think of this person anymore. At all. I found out that she was not the friend I thought she was over the years, and that she'd actually been trying to drive a wedge between me and Bugster for quite some time. She was undermining our relationship. I don't need people in my life that are toxic to my family. Needless to say, I don't like to think of her.

So, I decided to kill 2 birds with 1 stone, so to speak. Our porch and lives will be free of these shelves. We won't have to look at them. We won't have to store them. We won't have to feel guilty that we haven't used them yet. And we won't have them hanging over our heads anymore. And best of all, they won't bring *her* to mind anymore. It's a real win-win.

The other big decision I made was made yesterday. It wasn't as big as the shelves, but it was big enough for me. The hubster just took care of it for me today. I had a small wooden chest of drawers on the porch that I was going to place atop another small piece of furniture and paint it in vibrant colors for Hopper's room. The drawers had all been chewed on by dogs before we'd gotten it, so they'd been trashed a long time ago. I was just going to put some plywood or something in the areas where the drawers had been and have it be a cubby area for her clothes or toys or something.

But yesterday, I realized that I am just not up for it right now, and I'm not sure when I will be up for it. And I'm okay with that. And when and if I am ever up to it again someday, I can easily get a damaged chest of drawers to paint. So my wonderful husband broke the frame of the little chest of drawers up and he threw it away. So that's one less thing on the porch. It's one less thing hanging over my head mocking me, because I haven't gotten it done. And it's a little less weight I have on my shoulders.

As I write this, I have a slight urge to email the person back and tell them they can't have the shelves. And I have a few small physical symptoms. My legs are a little restless after having made the decision, and my heart is racing just a little. But it's nothing like I've had before. I honestly think part of it is just excitement knowing the things will be gone, and I'll never have to deal with them again.

I'm thrilled that decisions are becoming easier for me to make all the time. It doesn't mean I don't still struggle with certain things. I do. But I'm moving in a forward direction, and that's exciting for me. It gives me hope I'll make it to the end of this journey in one piece.

Oh! And the best part of the day? I got to catch up with a dear, dear friend that I haven't had a chance to talk to in several years. It was wonderful hearing her voice!

It really was a good day.


  1. So glad you had a good day! And, might I add, I can totally tell a difference in your thinking between when you started this blog and now! You are doing so awesome! ( :

  2. I think you're doing a GREAT job. Every time I read about your progress, I want to put a 'CLOSED' sign on the door (and my forehead!) for a couple of months and tackle every nook and cranny we have here. That may or may not be enough time....

    Keep up the good work; you'll be celebrating in no time!!!


  3. A great day indeed - You're doing fabulously!


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