20 Jun 2013

Hoarding material memories

My room has been an absolute mess recently as I prepare for my holidays.

My summer promises to be an excellent one this summer, especially compared to spending two months working as a cleaning lady last year. It all started with my internship, followed by a little weekend discovering Brighton, and is about to take off for an incredible two weeks as I a) continue my journey exploring Britain by heading up North for a long weekend, b) attend Glastonbury for the first time ever, and c) take a week off from life to lay on the beaches of Sardinia and show the boyf around Paris.

You'll hear more about all that soon, but today I want to focus on the mess.

My room has always been full of stuff. Bits and bobs piled everywhere, dozens of old postcards stuck to the walls, boxes after boxes full of books and old school notepads... It never stops. My mum was always — and still is — amazed at how much stuff I could collect and never throw away. She had this way of looking around my room with a half judging, half amused look, which I could very well read as "How can my daughter be so different from me?" (A much larger problem with many, many examples that I won't dare try to solve today.)

You'd think I would have matured and grown out of it, and this especially since I found out in the meantime that I'm actually allergic to dust! Stacks of trinkets and old things don't do well for me.

But ey, looks like I'm a hoarder through and through.

Committing to things makes me feel more grounded. I get to look around my room and see the things I have loved and still do, and the things that have changed. It's a sort of who I was, where I've been, how did I get there. My collections are material memories of every single little part of my life.

I have loads of earrings, boxes filled with old photos, stacks of books I will never read again and notebooks I barely even open anymore. I keep clothes I used to love and cards I've been given and have a recipe book collection that's been going out of control. And that's only things I can categorise.

Throwing away things breaks my heart a little because it feels like letting go of the memory.

As long as I've got a material reminder for it, I know I won't forget about it.

So I've kept the Macbar macaroni-shaped tupperware I got in New York last summer, and the letters my cousin sent me when I was 8, and the ticket for the terrible opera I went to with my housemates a few months ago. (Now that I think about it, I should actually probably throw that one away...)

Problem is, I've had a thing for moving recently. Remember that one time I had to fit all of my stuff in the boot of a car because I was leaving France for the UK? My dad sure remembers.

Plus, there's also millions of new memories waiting to be made. I need space for these.

This is a pledge to get rid of stuff. I've had the urge to throw away things recently; a consequence of my closet being 'cannot fit any more hangers/three shirts on one hanger' full. I am going to do it. I will empty boxes and fill bin bags and eBay the shizz out of my dust catchers.

Then I'll replace old memories with new ones and fill my room all over again.