Kondo Part 2
Once you decide to get rid of something, the next question is what to do with it. With clothes, it’s an easy answer for me. There is an excellent thrift shop in the next town, and they support community services.
But there are the things that pose a problem. In a box under my bed, is a crazy-squares afghan crocheted by my grandmother , probably 80 years ago. The yarn is wool, scratchy and can’t be washed. Otherwise, I could use it or part with it, probably giving it to a nursing home. But I can’t just dump it. In a different box there is something rather strange: a set of xeromammograms from forty years ago, before all the advances in breast-imaging. They seem too personal an item to toss and cutting up the films to put them in the trash feels like a violation of my body!
A close friend who was told she had only weeks to live was giving away possessions. She sent me a glass box of sea shells she had collected as well as some random ones. I loved my friend, but I really didn’t like the shells though I’m not sure why. Out of loyalty I kept the shells and box on a coffee table for several years, but when I got rid of the table, the shells were relegated to a cupboard. But I can’t just get rid of them.
And what about the tchotchkes of which I have many? A number of them were holiday or end-of-year-gifts from when I was teaching. Each was thoughtful and many were cat-themed: teapots, mugs, trivets, vases, trays. I might be able to give them to a rummage sale, especially one where a local church has a “Queen’s Room,” for “valuable” items. There’s the rub: I hate to give away items that might be of value if thoroughly researched. This is true of many gifted items on display on my hutch. But I did put two little Swarovski cats in the thrift store box. They were small, crystal, with beady black eyes and ridiculous tales that looked like springs. Both were gifts on separate occasions, and I always disliked them intensely. Oh, and I discovered that collectibles lose value if you do not have the original box!
Then there’s the beautiful bone china, place settings for twelve, and elegant crystal which no longer fit my life style. And, no, my kids aren’t interested. Guess they don’t fit their lifestyle either. I suppose I could set up an account on eBay or see if “Replacements” still buys things. But then I’d have to set prices , wrap, and ship. Seems like way too much work. Maybe someday.
The impulse to clear out things, ala Kondo (See last week’s post), was heightened when I had to look at and touch just about everything I own because I was getting new carpeting. I said to a kid who was helping me, “If you see anything you want, you can have it.” “I’d like the flat-screen TV,” came the response. “Well, maybe not ANYTHING ,” I said.
Dorothy C. Judd 2015
Next post: Monday, September 7th