Growing up I never really hoarded belongings, well I don’t remember ever doing so. I’m fairly certain my wardrobe wasn’t terribly expansive, as a teen in the 90’s I dressed pretty much solely in a band t shirt, a pair of levi’s and doc marten boots.
I didn’t hang on to old photos of boyfriends, or love letters, or gifts, and if I didn’t wear an item of clothing anymore it got turfed. Even my CD collection was subjected to being worked over every month or so as I sold them or traded them for new ones.
I remember moving out of home, and all of my belongings fitting in the back of a ute. And that included everything I needed to furnish my new flat.
I loved the freedom of not having things I really needed to take care of. I spent my time doing stuff, not looking after stuff, and I could easily have walked away from all of it without too much fuss. In fact a few times I’m pretty sure I did move house without most of it!
As an adult, I’ve accumulated a lot of crap. I live in a 3 bedroom house, which has a large basement / study and it’s pretty choc a bloc to the rafters. It has excellent storage, with built ins in every bedroom. It’s why we rented it, and one of the many reasons I resent my stuff. Because we have to cart it around with us. Ugh. Such a drag.
I’ve always appreciated minimalist decorating. I love walking into a home (or looking at pictures) where the place is decorated, shows of the persons style, but also doesn’t have lots of things in it. A wall of books frightens me. It’s just too many. I look at it and stress out over someone having to pack those things in boxes and lug them around when they move, and dust them, and read them. Does anyone read all the books in their collection all the time? I think not. I’d bet people have about 10 favourite books that they read every couple of years, maybe even only 1 of them a year. Dvd, video, record, and cd collections also fill me with the same amount of angst. It’s stressful just writing about it.
Even worse is novelty collections. Like action figures. Or ceramic cats. Magazines, newspapers, old mail, my god I think I might be about to have a fit.
Houses with paintings hung all bunched together, and some of them are crooked. Fuck me, I can’t be in the same room as it.
I don’t wear a lot of jewellery, or even own very much of it. It’s just such an effort! You’ve gotta put it on, take it off, take care of it, insure it, and most of the time you don’t wear it, or worse you never wear it, because you own so many bits of shiny crap to hang on yourself, you never get the chance to. Just get rid of it, why even own it in the first place?
All of these things, I’ve felt like this my whole life. Well for as long as I can remember. Reading about minimalism in the past few weeks has made me realise that maybe I’ve been a minimalist all along. Just a pretty crappy one.