Sigh.  I don’t know where to begin.  I don’t know when it began.  Maybe I’ve been like this forever.  Maybe the grief intensified my needs.  I’m going to admit it here, shout it out loud to hold myself accountable, I have too much stuff!

There, I said it.  I thought I was doing good before the move.  I felt like I had gotten rid of so much stuff!  It’s really hard to sift through 13 years of living in one place.  Parker and I both had our own stuff and lot’s of it.  We had lived on our own before.  It didn’t seem like much until we put it together.  Then add in 4 kids and pets and a house that is busting at the seams!  It is completely overwhelming.

And that’s just life.  We all probably have too much stuff at the end of the day.  We can all feel overwhelmed by it.  First world problems.  Here’s where it gets complicated though.  Grief compounds this.

My mom died when I was 16.  You’re damn right I want to hold onto as many memories of her as I possibly can.  I have to teach my children about their grandmother because they will never meet her.  It is so important to me that they know who she was and where they came from.  Does that mean that I need to hold onto her early 90’s mint green track suit to do so?  Or her costume jewelry from the 80’s?  I honestly don’t know.

Once someone is gone, how do you make that distinction about what is important to keep?  Even some 22 years later I don’t have any answers.  I try really hard to hold myself accountable.  I try to weigh how important it really is to hold onto a physical memento.  I’ve been able to let some things go. Others have been harder.

What do you do with 10 lbs. of toddler clothing from your deceased son?  I’ve had a few blankets made with some of the clothing and I’m thinking of having memory bears made for the kiddos, but what do I do with the rest?  I was able to talk myself into donating some of it, but there is still a good trash bag full.  How about the diaper bag that remains untouched from the day he died?  Sure I’ve looked at it.  I just don’t know what to do with it now.

There’s this whole Konmari method of cleaning out where you’re supposed to ask yourself if the item in question bring you Joy.  I’m not sure these items bring me joy, but they bring me back to a point in my life that I can’t ever get back to.  When things were simpler.  Less heartbreaking.  My ‘before’ if you will.

Do I need these things?  Probably not.  I don’t know how long they will remain in boxes in the new house simply because they are not items that we use on any type of frequent basis.  But still they comfort me, knowing that they are there.

I don’t know how long it will take me to let go.  Maybe never.  I guess that will just have to be ok for now.

Author: sheriroaf

Sheri Roaf is the mother of four wonderful children who turned to blogging after her 17 month old son Bennett passed away unexpectedly. Through her writing she has found a way to help herself and her family move forward in the face of tragedy.

5 thoughts on “Stuff”

  1. I’m not sure my opinion counts since I’ve been a pack-rat my entire life.. and only when my husband and I bought our first house did I start to declutter and keep less stuff.. but I think Konmari forgets about the past completely for the sake of cleanliness. I think keeping some of that stuff isn’t going to hurt the clean out process. It’s the day to day stuff we dont’ need, in my mind, that we keep… for instance, my 3 year old’s drawers are bursting at the seams. She has about 12 pairs of pants. 12! And wears maybe 4 or 5 of them on a regular basis. Also I need to see the mint green track suit some day so you can’t get rid of it. I’m pretty sure my mother had one too! 🙂


  2. The diaper bag. 😦 It’s those little things isn’t it? The things that remind you of what your every day life once was. So normal and so much easier. For what it’s worth, my grandfather died before I was born and I have lots of stories and memories but what I wouldn’t give to have a scarf or a pocket watch or something tangible. I’m of no help because I attach a memory to almost everything so it’s really hard for me to let go of stuff. I still have paint chips that my best friend (April) and I peeled off of her wall before her father sold the house. Who keeps paint chips for 23 years? If it brings comfort.. it stays.


    1. Ugh, didn’t realize I was posting under my business account. Sorry about that! You can erase that if you want.


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