My downsizing is ongoing. Often when we are involved in something we find other people who are involved in the same pursuit.
It doesn’t matter if it is eldercare, or downsizing, or painting a good watercolor graduated wash. It is good to learn of other perspectives and reframe our own. Nudges like this from the Universe help us remember that there are positive ways to look at even horrendous circumstances.
Reynolds Price’s book, “A Whole New Life,” provided me with a new perspective on my life when I read it in the 1990s during a difficult time. Here’s an interview Terry Gross made with Price in 1994.
Viktor Frankl’s book, “Man’s Search for Meaning,” helped me during another difficult time when I was an undergraduate in university. (It is also an interesting book to reread as you age.)
Readers of my blog will know that I found Roz Chast’s book on her relationship with her aging parents a wonderful delight when I was in the midst of eldercare for Dick’s parents. (This link is to my blog post about eldercare in which I mention the book at the very end under “Recommended Reading.” You can find the book at your local bookseller. My copy is in some box, stacked in storage…
What’s Important About Downsizing?
Some people may tell you that by downsizing you’re making space for yourself in your life. (And other happy quips like that. Frankly I just want to slap those people. I love being surrounded by the thousands of books that shaped my mind!
So that brings us back to the following truth (which is not as difficult to cope with as the three books referred to above):
It is NEVER TOO EARLY to start downsizing.
It is going to take much longer than you think, even if your plans aren’t exploded by something like a pandemic.
If you have kids or relatives who might end up cleaning up after you die do not be so rude and unthinking as to leave it all for them to do.
Do it now.
It doesn’t get easier. The longer you let it go the more things can go wrong. (Like everything, even your valuable stuff you want Aunt Jane to have, ends up in a landfill!)
I have found that downsizing (coming so quickly after cataract surgery took away my “comfort blanket” of being able to draw myself out of any box), has been a time where I have had to look at my entire life and make decisions about who I am and what matters—not for some stupid online profile to explain myself to strangers; but so that I can update myself into someone I still recognize.
If you want to like that person you’re becoming, start downsizing!