Sunday, June 1, 2014

Insight - To hoard or not to hoard - By Michelle Libby

There’s a saying, “I’m one book away from being a hoarder.” 

They also say, “Someday I’ll fit into those jeans I wore in high school.” 


I have some jeans like that, but they are so far out of style that I can’t get my daughter to wear them. “But they’ll fit great,” I said. 

“I’ll look like a dork,” she said. 

So when do we say goodbye to those items that we have kept for 20 plus years. The ones that take up space and have sentimental value. 

Maybe we don’t say goodbye because every so often we pull it out and relive the glory days. I still have my UMaine letter jacket that I wore all through college. I haven’t worn it since, but when my daughter was applying to UMaine, I pulled it out to show her. 

So far, jeans from high school – 0, UMaine letter jacket – 1.

I have a troll collection. I know…true confessions here. They are on shelves in my office and I refuse to part with them. There are about 25, each one different. I collected them through college, one from Annapolis, Maryland, when we completed against the Naval Academy and a bride and groom that my husband and I had on a wedding cake we had. Each one has a memory, or at least most of them. They made it through my children growing up and now, they sit on the shelves. Hmmm.

Jeans from high school – 0. Trolls – 1. 

Psychologically, I’m sure there is something that Elizabeth Giammarco, who writes for The Windham Eagle, would say about my need to keep things. I think it comes from my grandparents and probably many of our grandparents, who grew up during the Great Depression, where you didn’t throw anything away because you never knew if you’d need it or a piece of it later. Things are not made like they used to be. Plastic parts, cheap material means that you don’t keep that toaster like your parents did and you can’t keep a lawn mower for 30 years. 

At some point we have to say goodbye to our precious things that serve no purpose. And, before you tell me to get rid of my trolls, they make me smile…that’s a purpose. 

Those jeans from high school, I guess I’ll let them go. 

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