Today, I had some new furniture come into my place, and had to get rid of some old furniture. This meant moving things around, and also, since I live in Hong Kong where storage space is a luxury, it meant that I had to get rid of a lot of things to fit in other, newer items that I recently purchased.
Towards the end of it all, I filled up a suitcase full of old clothes that my mum wanted to donate, as well as three large bin bags full of “crap.” This “crap” consisted of old teddies and other gifts that I has received over the years, jewelry and make-up that I don’t wear anymore, books that have been lying on my shelf inviting nothing but dust and old cards and letters from so many people over the years. I only kept a few at the end.
All these things had one thing in common. When sorting them out from everything I ended up keeping, I had to maintain one type of emotion, one state of being throughout the entire process: heartless. I had to leave my heart outside my bedroom in order to have even the slightest ounce of courage to start dumping clothes into the suitcase or books into the bags. You don’t realize how much you actually adored a piece of clothing until you have to part with it. Take for example this grey T-shirt with Aztec patterns that I formerly owned. I never thought much of it while I owned it. Just wore it if it caught my eye in my drawers. However, as I put it in the suitcase, the T-shirt’s life span under my possession flashed by my eyes. How I wore it on the first week of university. How I wore it when I attempted to dye my hair (leaving a few dye stains on the bottom of the back). How the cotton felt soft and comfortable against my skin. It’s when I was putting it in my suitcase when I realized it’s true sentimental value.
But when throwing things out, you can’t let emotion cloud reason. Remember that episode in “How I Met Your Mother” when Ted makes Marshall and Lily throw out things that they had not used in over a year? You need to have that Ted mentality. Not let your emotions run wild. Just keep throwing shit into the bin bags.
I guess some good comes out of all of it though. Rather than throwing it in the dump yard, donating everything makes it all feel worthwhile. It’s going to people who not only want the things, but really need it. So you feel a little better in the whole process.