Getting rid of stuff
Over the course of my 53 years on this earth, I've been involved with a lot of hobbies. So, when I settled into this house 16 years ago, I envisioned retiring here. Started setting up a woodworking shop, metal-working shop with a lathe and mill, welders, etc. Plus music stuff and electronic repair stuff... lots of tools and lots of STUFF.
Then I landed on the "Chance" square of Monopoly, I guess. Not just once but several times. I got laid off of my job of 14 years. My mother developed Alzheimers and died. And worst of all, my wife died. :crying:
I've decided to move out west and start fresh. There's too many memories--in this house and in this area. Plus, I have family out west so I could be closer to them, and other than the few friends I have here in Nashville, there's nothing significant to keep me here.
However, just "up and moving" isn't easy. I've got literally tons of stuff. I've begun the extremely difficult task of trying to get rid of a lot of my things, because I can't take it all with me. This is mentally very hard, because some of these things have very strong memories attached to them. Yes I know the saying "do you own stuff or does stuff own you?" yet that doesn't make it any easier. My motorcycle...had it 25 years; it's going up for sale. My boat...had it 20 years, lots of fun times on it...I guess it's going up for sale.
Letting go is hard. The last couple of years have been the most difficult time of my entire life and starting over seems like the only way through. Don't know why I'm spilling my guts out on this forum but I probably spend more time on here than anywhere else lately.
I'm not your age, only 42 here, but I know how you feel. I went through the exact same emotions when we moved from WA to NH in October 2011. Now, we are preparing to move back, and I have to do it all over again.
What helped me was having a close friend, not family, sort through my stuff. I was also able to give much of it to other family members and friends who I knew would cherish it for me. Maybe that is an option for you in one way or another.
Sometimes a fresh start is whats really needed.
Hey, we do a re-boot on the computer when the memory gets full and becomes dysfunctional, right?
Im sorry to hear about your wife.
Best of luck with the re-boot.
If you want to get rid of the things like the bike and the boat because you just want to start with a fresh slate and not have anything that would tie you to your previous life, that's understandable. However, if you enjoy those things and you could bring them with you and still continue to enjoy them, then there's no reason to throw the baby out with the bathwater, so to speak. If they still bring you joy, you might consider keeping them. If they no longer do, then it's probably just as well to let them go.
In 1968 I got a Fiat 1200 Roadster for graduation from high school. I sold it two years ago, after having it in the garage as a project car for 30+ years.
I feel better...it needed to happen.
I won't claim that I'm good at letting go of stuff, but I am working on it one group of stuff at a time.
As we age, life does change. If nothing else, our interests probably evolve. I'm slow to let go, but Craigslist has been my friend. I've sold two cars within 48 hours of posting them.
The big piece is making the decision.
it's hard letting go of stuff, but the bright side is that other people will likely get good use out of your stuff. start listing it all on craigslist.... if it has to go, it has to go.
My deepest condolences on the loss of your wife. I know how you feel as my wife died earlier this year, leaving me to raise my two eight year girls alone. It hurts like heck and if I didn't have them I would get rid of my house too and look for a different place live. There are memories everywhere I turn. There is no worse feeling than watching your spouse pass away.
Hang in there Bill. Moving is always tough.....especially under your circumstances, but a change of pace may be helpful. Besides, maybe you can grow back your mustache out there! ;).
now is the time to rid yourself of the things that no longer serve you
Watch a few episodes of Hoarders.
That gave me a kick-start to curtail my collecting proclivities.
I too have a number of things I'm interested in: music, stereo gear, movies,
my woodshop, photography, old computers.
The house just isn't big enough for all that.
I just took it one small step at a time.
Got rid of some electronic carcasses that I'd been meaning to fix (for 15 years)
Then started scrapping computers and monitors.
I do a lot of construction/handyman stuff around here,
and either got rid of a lot of the stuff,or organized it into areas/bins.
Donated a ton of VHS tapes, sold off film camera gear that's been gathering dust for years.
(How many cameras can you shoot at one time??)
House and property is still cluttered as hell, but even Wife of Nojj has noticed the difference.
I had a 81' Shovelhead FLH that I did not want to get rid of, but it's too dangerous to ride where I live.
On the other hand, if you have a small wood lathe that you want to sell, let me know...
I will keep my metal lathe OTOH.
If you plan to engage in wood/metalworking once you get out there, consider the quality of your equipment vs what you'll find after you sell yours. It may work out better to keep some things just because you're familiar with them, they work well, you'll have to spend a lot of time setting up whatever you buy and it may cost more than moving yours.
I have been threatening myself with moving to the SW (most likely Arizona) and I would hate to buy replacements for most of my woodworking machinery- the price has risen significantly and the setup time would keep me from using them. I contacted PODS to get a price and it was incredibly reasonable. The jointer and planer could go, but I really like my table saw and the band saw isn't so heavy that it would be a difficult move.
When I move, I'll be selling almost all of my furniture, the appliances will stay, I could donate most of my clothes (not exactly a fashion plate, so it's not like it's all designer stuff) and things like kitchen ware isn't very hard to replace, so I would have a big moving sale to eliminate what I don't want to take with me. I started selling off things I don't use, so it won't be too hard. I have a cargo van, so I could take my guitars/basses/amps/electronics/needed clothes with me and buy what I need as I go.
Good luck to you.
Can I ask how long it's been?
I'm so sorry for your loss; it's a life changing event. :(
She passed Jan 2012 so it's been 19 months.
I've got a big cargo trailer I will tow with the truck. Weight might still be a problem.
I'm sorry for your losses.
My husband can identify with the "stuff owns you" part of what you said. He has *tons* of stuff, which he's had for decades and can't get rid of for some reason or another. Actually in recent years he's gotten much better, but there is still so much to do. It has been a gradual process of learning to let go, move on, and embrace his life now instead of hanging on to vestiges of what used to be.
I wish you well in your journey.
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