February 07, 2011

We need to talk about the basement....

There is only so long a person can go
and continue avoiding the one thing that fills them with dread the most.

The basement.

Our house has an apartment in the basement.
We don't rent it out and thank goodness we don't because

A) It's filled with crap

B) It's positively freezing down there in the winter. I don't know how anyone could ever have lived down there, much less made someone pay to live down there. It's inhumane.

We'd rather never have to rent it but it's great to think if we just fixed it up a bit (and put in a heat source) that we could use it as a fall back.
So. The basement.

It's easy for me to ignore the basement because I don't spend a lot of time down there (because of both A and B above) but also because of this:

See that?

Bins and bins of my past.

Stacked to the ceiling.

Let's take a closer look shall we?
It contains such favorites as this:

Fisher-Price playhouse circa 1974.
It's in really good condition too...

 I love this playhouse. I will find a place for it somewhere....

looking at this makes me feel like I might have a panic attack.

My father was/is a pack rat.
I grew up in a five bedroom house that was packed to the gills.
My mother loved her share of stuff too,
but she's been dead for almost 20 years and
my Dad took over and didn't throw anything away.
Until last year.

I'm sure I've mentioned this before.
Dad and his girlfriend decided to move 
so after being in the same house for 35 years, the big pack and purge began.

My sister made sure I got all of my stuff from his house, most of which I had forgotten existed.
She brought it up when she came to visit one weekend, a month or two before we moved into the house.
I decided I couldn't deal with the emotional part of sorting through 
faint memories of a very distant childhood, that, in some ways, I have few memories of.
Especially revisiting the sense of loss of my mother that I always feel when I take a stroll down memory lane.

We bought a bunch of rubbermaid containers
and moved it.
Into the basement.
And there it still sits.
Waiting for me to sort through it.
A lot of the cardboard boxes you see are books.
We haven't built bookcases yet and so all of our books are still packed.
And we have a lot of books.

But it's time.
Believe it or not,
spring is coming.
The magazines and flowery fashions tell me so.
And when the weather warms up
I don't want to be sorting through old Barbies in the basement.
So I'm going to take a stab at it.

I never want to be a packrat. 

It makes me anxious to think of all of the stuff we have.
It's a weight around my neck
because I saw what it did to my Dad.

But the playhouse is staying.
I'll keep you posted on what else gets saved.

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