Every shelf emptied eventually gets filled. It’s been a weird ebb and flow seeing empty shelves when I sit down to write one evening, then seeing full shelves the next evening, but I suppose for large-scale packing projects of recovering hoarders, adjusting to life without so much clutter everywhere, natural tendencies easily return, and yet, over the course of these past few months I’ve made significant, prolific changes. The shelf is half-full or half-empty, perhaps…
The photographed shelf above once contained a clutter of CDs.
After those CDs condensed down, for a day, DVDs did stay, before it became a catch-all for office supplies. Soon I will take it all down, wrap it all up, and put it into deep storage. I never liked it as a CD rack, so after I move, it will become my DVD rack. It will be soon thereafter be replaced by a more legitimate shelving unit that could actually hold light boxes. These office supplies, the shelving, it’s all temporary.
I’ve been condensing then expanding based on the type of work I’m doing.
Other than this soon-to-be-former CD rack, I have one other spot for CDs, and after I put away almost all of the CDs into storage, that’s that. If I find any additional CDs, like I have DVDs or anything else, they’ll go into containers depending on their numbers. This same philosophy applies to everything else I’ve been doing. Some of this requires more space than others. My sorting table will become a mess for weeks at a time, get cleared in a day, then return to a mess. It’s frustrating in one regard since I want to actually use the table for sorting, but it’s nice in another way because it does represent that messy side of my personality – that sort of dump it off, deal with it later, I’m needing to complete this, that, and the other before I complete uhhh… how did this happen again mentality, a specific yet nameable mentality – and so having it out there for me does represent my continual need to improve on that clutter.
It’s just easier seeing everything grouped together out in the open.
Maybe it’s the open air that gives the objects taking up that space a mysterious grandeur? Grouping like things together makes it easy to figure out what to keep, donate, or toss. Using “the last one” is always a touchy matter. If you see you have twelve more, it doesn’t matter so much. Just like having things hidden in boxes, whose contents you forget over time because you didn’t properly track what was in each box, will lead you to forget what is in each box.
This move was an organic process for me.
I learned about myself, my relation to materialism, and what I want out of life. I skipped the music, action figure, and videogame aisles of a big box supermarket today. It wasn’t easy. I needed groceries, then to get home to… decompress, actually.
|Sources: My personal experiences.|
|Inspirations: I showed my packing progress to two people. One said everything was clearing up nicely. The other was surprised over how much stuff I still had after over three months of packing. Seven years of unchecked hoarding does stuff like that.|
|Related: Other Moving Zeal essays.|
|Photo: I was looking around at other shelves that might represent the title, yet this was the one that seemed easiest to convey that meaning. Cropped partially for lighting, but also to keep clear context.|
|Written On: February 21st [30 minutes]|
|Last Edited: First draft; final draft.|