Inherited Clutter

Inherited Clutter

Laure Joliet
Mar 14, 2008
Yes, half of this is at our house now
As we begin the Cure, we're faced with all this stuff in our homes. Even if we've put the apartment on a diet it can still be emotionally taxing to sort through what's already there. One of the most challenging forms of clutter for us has been the inherited kind:

My grandmother lived in a house that she and her husband built in Glendale in 1947. My mom grew up there and I spent a lot of my childhood there too. Plus I was just really close to my gramma. So when she died almost 2 years ago and the family decided to sell the house, I wanted to hang onto everything. It didn't help that she had a lot of stuff.

I ended up carting a ton of that stuff into my tiny apartment. I got some great things like a danish modern credenza, love seat, bar stools, and nightstands. I also got things like her sewing machine and her kitchenaid stand mixer, both things we had used together.

And then there was the other stuff: the dishtowels that remind me of her, the cups we ate ice cream out of together, her calendars, the 60's era orange and yellow sheets that remind me of spending the night with Gramma, the candle holders that had lived on the mantle of the fireplace for my whole life, things I just couldn't let anyone throw away or give away. I even have her porch light!

None of that could replace letting go of spending time in her garden with her. But things were the next best thing. I also got the advice at the time that I could always throw things away later.

I've given myself time and haven't forced myself to part with anything I'm not ready to. But I've noticed that 'because it was my gramma's' is my answer often for why I have something. Not because I love it or use it but because it reminds me of her. And since I just moved I have even less space to keep all these things so I'm facing some decisions about what I really want to keep.

Has anyone else dealt with loss and clutter?

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