Coming Clean

Writing101 Day8: Expand a Comment into a Post

“This past year I took my procrastination to a whole new level and turned it into complete and utter avoidance.”

I was actually quite ambitious last fall. I made a list of some home renovation projects that I felt I could tackle during the cold winter months. My goal was “simple” – reinsulate, re-poly the basement, and apply a roll of P2000 or equivalent. My aim? To make my home more energy efficient. I would save on heating costs and, as an added bonus, I would be able to restructure the containers that are strewn about the basement floor. I knew it would be a daunting task. I broke it down into manageable sections and resolved to tackle one small space at a time. I set about, eager with my plan, and finished off the first area with a satisfied gleam in my eye.

The problem occurred when I moved on to the next section…

As I began to sort through some of the boxes, I became lost in their contents. One hour would turn four. Sentimental feelings over the trinkets that I would find would wash over me. I would smile and place the possessions back into the box.

 A month passed by and I had not accomplished much. I abandoned my efforts and moved them to the main floor. I began to declutter my daughter’s room – bagging up the clothes that didn`t fit and boxing up the toys that she wasn`t playing with. When I took those upstairs, I realized there was very little room up there too.

As a new parent, I was grateful when other people donated their clothes and toys. I would hate to have to open my wallet and spend my money on anything if I could get it for free. I was reluctant to give any of those belongings away – maybe we will have another child, maybe she will want to play with this rattle for five minutes again; I can`t give that away, my sister bought it. As a stepmother of two older daughters, I was reluctant to get rid of some of the boxes of dishes and extra appliances that are downstairs. What happens if the girls need something? They might want that pot one day; they might need a four slice toaster for their bachelor pad; they might need twenty saucers.You know what? The girls live three hours away. When they needed a set of dishes, they went to Walmart and bought their own!

I came to the conclusion that I was a hoarder . My excuses were ridiculous. I was overwhelmed! I burnt my to-do-lists and enjoyed life. I ignored all of those things I didn`t accomplish. But they never left the back of my mind; they seemed to linger and quietly nag me.

At least being able to go back to the source has helped me to face it and start again. Thank you Brooke, for creating the starting point. If you would like to join our conversation as we tackle our chronic procrastination issues, please visit us there. And thanks too, to Hoarder Comes Clean, for the motto “one box at time.” It seems less overwhelming when you look at it that way.

31 thoughts on “Coming Clean

      1. …and what I do is start by making a list of all the boxes to be addressed… and then put that list into a spreadsheet… and then calculate the order of priority… and then label or number or colour-code the boxes to reflect the Plan of Approach…. and then go watch Netflix and eat ice cream.

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            1. You are so funny! I know how it goes, I always end up buying craft supplies that I hardly use, chips, Pepsi. ..the list goes on. When I get to the til I am always astonished how much money I have spent!


    1. Thank you Jacqueline! I can’t throw anything out and have started to post items on Facebook. People, I think, like free stuff and it will save me the hassle of hauling it to good will. Whatever is left, I’ll take it to the nearest goodwill. Two boxes gone!

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  1. I have been hanging on to literally old stuff thinking that my kids would need them…LOL mine live in the same town…and they a few years ago set me down and said that they really love me but don’t want anything that I have…so the old way is no longer….I remember my parents giving me all sorts of stuff and I was so happy to get them….times have really changed…at that point I packed up all the stuff I thought they might want someday…and gave it to good will…when I actually looked at it I don’t think I would even want it…LOL so I no longer hang on to anything for my kids…if they want something they better dang well ask for it or it may not be here…LOL and its true one bag at a time…it will eventually be carried out….

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  2. I pity the person(s) that have to go through our house when we’re gone. Daunting task indeed. The sad thing is, when I first moved in with my wife, I could move in a Jeep Cherokee…in one trip! Not so much anymore.

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    1. I can totally relate! I am having trouble deciphering what we really need because I need the access. And it would be really great if we could find the things we put down there. Right now, it’s a maze. I would also like to install a wood furnace so I need to clear the space.

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        1. We had one of those years ago, heated water lines and the lines were trenched inside. Used it until the water cavity rusted out and couldn’t hold the water any more. Good memories regarding that stove, hubby and I would go and collect the wood together, hauling out deadfall from neighbours, bondung moments in nature. We do have a wood furnace, stored elsewhere. The power was out for 16 hours once last year, made me worry and think we should be bringing the stove home.

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          1. I hear ya. I’m just fed up with paying for propane. Or being put on allocation when they run low. I loathe winter anyway. I sure as hell don’t want to freeze in my own house. We have plenty of access to downed wood so I would never have to buy any. We have fireplaces but most of that heat goes up the chimney.

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  3. I like “one box at a time.” One of my projects, and I don’t know when, is to get rid of the contents of my mothers condo that I rescued from storage before I quit talking to her. In her very passive aggressive self she decided she did not want any of it afterwards. I have the contents of someone else’s whole household in my shed and it’s been there for about 4 years. Sigh.

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