This past weekend my building hosted its second clothing drive of the year. The clothing drive has been held every January and September for the last several years and it’s really popular with the residents. This was my third time helping out at the event. Similar to the other two times, I was astounded at how much stuff the building donated. The haul from this drive looked larger, perhaps because small housewares, electronics, bedding, curtains, kitchen appliances, etc. were being accepted this time.
Some of the stuff was so old, I could only wonder why it hadn’t been donated, or tossed, earlier. Since the scope of this drive was a lot broader than it had been in previous years, we got some different types of items. Residents donated bread makers, pasta makers, graters, food processors, food dehydrators, evidence of kitchen projects and ambition gone astray. Other items included two over-the-door workout bars, a calf/leg massager, sets of silverware, several VHS players, and even some cassette tapes made their way into the pile.
Throughout the drive I remember thinking with so much donated, what were people left to wear? And how do we always seem to end up collecting so much stuff, anyway?
I love kitchen gadgets. If I had the space, I could see myself buying a pasta maker and a bread maker, using them once, and then letting them collect dust in a closet. And the whole time I would be convincing myself that I really was going to make pasta and bread again, maybe even open up an Italian restaurant…sometime.
I’m often surprised at how much I seem to acquire every time I go through my closets. Or how long I’m willing to keep something before I can release it. I have things I’ve been clinging on to for decades, all because I’m still interested in them, or at least that’s what I tell myself. Sometimes the item is a physical representation of a project, intention, dream, yearning… this emotional attachment makes it much harder to give it away. Now, I like to be honest with myself and acknowledge that dreams can evolve, or morph, into something else. Then I make space for new things to come into my life.