Clearing Out Bad Memories

Today I’m going to share a response I got from Pat Moore, The Queen of Clutter, after she read some of my blog entries, particularly one about how objects can have negative associations. Pat was the first professional organizer in Richmond, Virginia. She cleared a path for me and was my mentor. Over the years she has sent me some wonderful referrals who have become long-term clients and friends. I am so grateful for her generous spirit, warm heart and wise counsel. She gave me permission to share her words with you. I offer them to you as move evidence that we professional organizers struggle to release our stuff too!

“You made me really rethink about something. Clients give me stuff too, and some of it I love. Some of it I keep because it is “expensive to buy.” But, do I really need it? I do give away a lot of stuff to Goodwill, and Anna could be their poster child, but I also tend to keep things based on their value. Come to think of it, I think it makes me THINK I’m a better, or more worthy person because I have this expensive stuff.

Not like any of it cost a fortune.

I have this one beautiful expensive platter that drags me down. I have nowhere to really put it and never think about using it. The story behind it is I did one of those speeches where they gave a small honorarium. I was dead broke and really needing the cash to put gas in my car! I did the speech and they handed me a gift certificate to one of those fancy smancy stores. The kind that I have to “dress up” to go into :). Talk about a let down.

But I went to the store with this gift certificate determined that I’d find something wonderful and so expensive I’d never dare purchase it. Found nothing. ZILCH. The stuff was pretty, but nothing spoke to me. I could find no practical use for any of those things either. ME, who loves stuff. So I got that platter. EVERY time I look at it I remember that disappointment. It’s leaving this house!

I’d rather remember the time I was afraid I wouldn’t make it to the church speech because my gas guage was on E, and I only had a dollar or two. I did the free speech (never mentioning that I may be walking home), and at the end the planner said, “I’m sending the basket around as a love offering.” She apologized that it wasn’t much, but you know, it was exactly enough to fill up my car with gas. Now, that’s good memories!”

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