Your Grandmother is Not a Lumpy Couch

If you are over 21, you have baggage.
Literally and figuratively.
Old relationships… old gifts received from loved ones.

I have every photo of all of my college friends’ children that they have sent me over the years. I have never met these children. But I have given them space in my life.

I attach meaning to these things… to gifts. I have wonderful things I feel I can’t throw away because of who they came from.

I have my Grandmother’s couch, my Great-Grandmother’s rocking chair, my Grandfather’s pots and pans, several quilts my Grandmother made for me, my children’s first outfits… the list goes on and on.

One of the best coaching questions I ask is, “So, what are you making that mean?”

Clearly, I am making it mean that if I give away the apron my Grandmother used to wear, I am giving away some of her love.

But held up to the light of day, of course that’s not true. My Grandmother is not an apron or a lumpy couch. And at the end of the day, I would like to keep at least one thing she gave me. But they are just things.

I prefer carrying with me the confidence my Grandmother gave me because she thought I could hang the moon. I carry with me the love of walking my Grandfather gave me.  For some physical things I take a photo and tuck that away.

As things have built up in my house, that clutter of objects gets in the way of the good things with which I want to fill my life. It robs me of time as I shift things around or (ugh) clean them.

Clearing out the clutter gives me a sense of freedom.
That freedom feels like a weight being lifted off my shoulders and my heart.

It’s going slowly, but I am filling my life with things that give me joy and letting the rest go to someone who could really use it.
I have chosen to throw out the pictures of my friends’ children. I have given my children’s crib to a woman who needs it now. I am making space for joy.

Bring it on, Christmas!






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