Sunday, February 17, 2013

My desire to simplify: I'd give it all away


"I'd love to get rid of half the stuff that we have." 

Many of my friends and family have heard me say that numerous times over the last couple years.  It is so very true.  Firstly, we have too much stuff.  We have too many clothes, too many movies, too much paperwork, too many toys, etc.  Secondly, our children love to make messes much more than they like to help clean them up.  These messes turn into tripping hazards and obstacles that are simply sometimes unsafe to brave when John has a bad day, can't see very well, is dizzy and off balanced, and especially when he needs to use a walker or wheelchair.  Lastly, I'm simply tired of cleaning up.  My theory is that if we have less stuff to make messes with there will be less mess to clean up.  

Before Christmas 2012, we gave a lot away. We gave away bags and bags of toys and clothes.  I felt great about getting rid of so much and also seeing it go to others that could use it.  Yet, it just didn't even seem to put a dent in our stuff.  Then, we had a yard sale in January.  I will likely never have a yard sale in January again.  You can not even give things away because most everyone that usually would be buying up your cheap bargains (I'm talking about .50 GAP toddler jeans and .25 pajamas) just had a successful Christmas and didn't yet need anything else.  So, we heard of a family that adopted two or three boys just younger than ours and we packed up some more stuff and sent their way.  

We still have so far to go.  Why is it that we even accumulate so much stuff in the first place? We want? We need? We get sucked into the latest marketing ploy? We want our kids to have more and better than we had? We get trapped into collecting things we don't need? We hang onto things that are unnecessary?  Now, don't get me wrong because we are certainly not hoarders or pack rats by any means.  We just have so much stuff that we simply don't need.  We've had things left over from business and personal projects and it resides in the garage and the shed.  We still have a few clothes we've hung onto that we will likely never wear again.  We have to get rid of it.  Less seems like more these days, yet ten years ago I wouldn't have been in that mindset.  

We're stepping out.  We don't know where we are going or what all it will involve but we're finally at peace.  We're letting go.  Breathe.  Simplify. 

I guess we have got to the point in life where we have had some measure of success and we've had some failures.  I'm certain that there will be more of each of those to come.  However, money in the bank, a successful or unsuccessful business, and worldly belongings will never be able to take the place of cherished quality of life with those you love and happiness.  Sure, money can buy entertainment and adventure.  Even for us, in order to keep our sanity we have to get out frequently.  Yes, that costs money too.  However, if I have the ones that I love around me and minimal amount of comforts I seem to feel more carefree.  

We have a house that is beautiful, yet it is not ideal for us because of John's disabilities.  Almost 100% of the time he can't cut the grass or keep up the yards barbecue of his severe headaches, seizures, etc.  I can't help maneuver him to via the wheelchair through the house because his wheelchair won't fit through the halls, closets, or doorways.  I'm tired of struggling with this.  

Just very recently did we become accepting of the idea that we need to get out of our house.  We need to find a more suitable home.  We need to simplify because I don't want to move all the things we have.  We just don't need them.  We need each other.  We need love.  We need forgiveness.  We need grace.  We're stepping out.  We don't know where we are going or what all it will involve but we're finally at peace.  We're letting go.  Breathe.  Simplify.
Toby Mac's "I was made to love you"

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