It’s amazing, disturbing, and disconcerting the range of emotions that flood through when I go to dispose of stuff.  I had this problem as a child.  I won’t get into the psychology of it or even explain my thinking, because, let’s face it, that would just make me seem even crazier.

I was reflecting yesterday, “I’m not getting rid of my stuff because I don’t love it.  I’m getting rid of my stuff because I do.”    The true meaning of that varies with the item, but possessions sometimes, and more likely often times, become anchors in lives.  They weigh down and prevent forward movement or even any movement at all.  Things are held close or simply held for a multitude of reasons.  Some valid, some not.

The desk that I built when I was teenager has no place on a boat.  It also had no place at any other home.  It was 20+ years old and showed it.  It had been used as a desk, table, and work bench.  It was still solid, but no longer shiny and new.  I broke out the reciprocating saw to trim it into pieces that would be manageable for the trash man.

I stood there for a moment pondering what was about to occur.  Once the saw blade was put to it, there would be no going back.  It’s just a desk and at the same time more than a desk. It was upsetting.  And it was disturbing that it was upsetting.  I was about to destroy an item simply because it now no longer had any use in my life yet it had been so useful up to that point.  I had created it and was now to terminate its existence . . . not because of anything it had done, but because of something I was doing.

Shut off the emotions.  Press the saw trigger.  Put the blade to wood.

Deed done.  20+ years gone in seconds.  I feel penitent.

Published On: 2014 December 10

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