Monday, September 19, 2011

Sorting the stuff

This is a little post regarding the ongoing saga of my family's recovery from Hurricane Irene.

Last Friday the insurance adjuster made it out to our home.  My husband handled this all on his own.  He did a pretty good job.  He was completely focused on the roof and the damage in the attic.  And why wouldn't he be?  This is where he has spent most of his time and energy.  I counted on him for this.  We also have to have our deck replaced.  They dropped the tree on the deck while removing it from the roof of our house.  Our deck no longer meets code, so no one will repair it.  It has to be replaced.  Also, we have about a dozen other trees that are either down or leaning that need to be removed.  I depended on my husband to remember to deal with all these things.  I, however, was thinking about the interior space of the rooms.  I was thinking about the dry walling, the carpeting, the painting, the STUFF.  I called the insurance adjuster today and left a voice-mail.  I hope she will call me back.   *Please Heather, call me back.*

But, back to the STUFF.

I remember making a statement in my post, Goodnight Irene, while I was still in shock about my house being broken.  I remember saying something about it being a positive opportunity to clean out my son's room of STUFF.  Obviously I was in shock.  Obviously, I didn't know what the heck I was saying.  There is NOTHING positive about this experience in ANY way.  Ok, I'm sorting through my son's stuff.  With him.  I have discovered my son is,... sort of,... a hoarder.  He gets this from his father and possibly from a recessive gene on his mother's side.  *sigh*

Now we are back from vacation and hip-deep in the work of restoring our home.  Of course, my son did nothing on the sorting of stuff on his own.  Because, seriously, he thinks it is all precious.  Oh my.

I've told you I'm a fan of the show Hoarders.  I know those people have a mental illness and cannot be shamed into cleaning up their act.  So, I was gentle with him.  At least, I was as gentle as I can be with anyone.  We started with clothing.  I convinced him to part with clothing that no longer fit him.  In fact, a couple times he came to the realization the articles of clothing were from his middle school years.  He was able to part with quite a bit.  It's a start.  I moved on to empty boxes.  I know this is a gene inherited from his father.  I cannot, for the life of me, understand the allure of the empty box.  However, I've seen the attraction my husband has for them, so I could understand there would be the same attraction here.  He was able to part with four empty boxes.  It's a start.  I can see this is going to be a long process.  I'm a little scared.  I think I may take to clearing stuff out in the middle of the night, just to get this job done.  *sigh*

I don't want to dwell on this area of my life, but right now, cleaning up and restoring my home seems to be swamping all other things I do right now.  I go to work, but when I get home I start working on the house.  This is my new NORMAL.  This is How My Life Is, for a while.  And I think it will be a long while.  I covet your encouragement and well wishes.  I intend to stay positive, but some days it is tough to do.  I'm seriously trying to let the negative go.  I try not to think about the people complaining that the tennis courts are still damaged and why don't we GET GOING and get them fixed.  It's amazing the attitudes some folks have.  Can you say empathy?

I certainly have more empathy than I ever had before.


  1. ((hugs)) i know that when the castle is in chaos, it makes itreally hard to feel normal....i hope the clean up fix up replace gets better and you can get to the point you can look back on it....

  2. Praying for you and your new normal.  I hope they fix things soon so you can move on and enjoy it.

  3. how frustrating !  However, sounds like you are making progress and THAT is a great thing in which i shall rejoice for you. Was interested to discover some one elses hubby has a fascination for empty boxes. I thought I lived on a island in that regard. It has been a source of frustration for me many times....and then one of thankfulness when i needed a  box. 
    such a mixture life is.
    blessings on your stuff sorting,

  4. That fascination with empty boxes is a new one on me.  I hope it all gets better soon - I know that must be a pain!

  5. Oh, you are so lucky not to have to deal with the empty box fascination.  I AM jealous.  :)

  6. Sistah, thanks for sharing.  Any box I EVER need I can get from my office.  I have NO need of them in the house.  AND, you remember, I'm an eBayer.  :)

  7. It's going to be  a long long time, but yes, I look forward to this being my past.

  8. Uggg to new normals!   :)  I think it is the rain that has the grumpy whining going on.  Oh well!  It's our blogs and we'll whine if we want to.  :o)


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