Sunday, July 23, 2006

Emotional Check-Up

The outdoor changes are easy. The things stored in the garage are mostly either damaged by being stored there or are not my things. There's not a lot of emotional attachment there. It's just relief at seeing broken, useless things carted away. It's a good feelng, a lightness. But also, there's this nagging 'why did I/we wait so long?' Why did we live with this junk for so long? Why was its toxic presence allowed?

My father used to spend Sundays 'working' in our garage. I use quotation marks because really, he just moved things around a little, and more often, added more stuff. Our garage was full. Literally full. The door barely opened--you had to heave on it and force it. Nothing in it was really organized. Boxes and bags, all piled atop each other. Old clothes, books, magazines, furniture, tools & nails, you name it, it was in there. My dad was very protective of it; we kids liked to play in it because there were all sorts of interesting things to be found, but he didn't want us in there without him. Of course, there were practical reasons for that. It was quite dangerous, and there were, let's call them rodents. And spiders. Lots of spiders.

In case you couldn't tell, my dad was a hoarder. He was a young man during the Great Depression, which doubtless affected him. He also had jobs that put him in proximity to a lot of stuff--he worked as a longshoreman and for a salvage company. Really, that's like an alcoholic working in a bar. Or a gambler living on the Las Vegas strip.

No comments: