We are in a massive decluttering phase in our house. I’m feeling incredibly overwhelmed by all the “stuff” and need to Konmari the heck out of our space. I recruited my family to participate, mostly because misery loves company. We sold our dining table online and decided to exile unsalvageable furniture to the dump (who doesn’t love a romantic drive to the transfer station?) My son was sent to his room to identify what he wanted to sell, donate and throw away. The following is a synopsis of his reactions.
Let’s Make A Deal
My kid is very independent and prizes his ability to purchase his own gum balls at will. He hoards money like he hoards toothbrushes (and he owns 13 of those.) When I suggested he get rid of his miniature cars he never plays with, he was not on board with the concept. When I told him he could sell them on the local bidding wars group on Facebook, it was a completely different story. His entrepreneurial spirit soared and he began looking around for what else he could sell. He made $37 selling his toys online and was completely delighted. That was going to buy an awful lot of gum balls.
I’ll Never Let Go, Jack
For some other items proposed for disposal, his reaction was somewhat more dramatic. He clutched a stuffed animal his cousin’s sister’s aunt’s former roommate might have given him one day as if was his last friend in the entire world. Whatever thing he could not have previously located was suddenly of utmost importance. It was like asking him to leave his first love behind—all Rose and Jack on Titanic like.
He made it clear that while he was participating in the process, he was not at all invested. He would let me win this time, but I had a distinct sense revenge would later be his. He would dispose of things, but he was not going to like it. He had devised an elaborate sticker reward system to thank my boyfriend and I for doing nice things for him and he informed me he could retract stickers he had bestowed upon us. He meant business. I could take his old toys, but I could never take his freedom to whine about it obsessively later.
Maybe Mom Was Right After All
By the end of the day, he was delighted with the results. He became reacquainted with the soft hue of his carpet. He was reunited with toys long forgotten. His bedroom wasn’t just for toy storage, he could actually play in it. SO MUCH ROOM FOR ACTIVITIES. Finally, there was rejoicing.
We decluttered and made space for the joy of our family to expand. Misery loves company and so does my boyfriend when he drives the minivan of our old stuff to the dump. We started off overwhelmed with “stuff” and ended up feeling overwhelmed with love (and $37 worth of gum balls).