I’ve been a busy busy girl these last couple of days. Every year before Christmas I like to do a massive purge of all three kid’s rooms. I get the two big kids (12 and 10) set up in each of their rooms concentrating on one area at a time. I then move between the two rooms giving them guidance as needed.
For instance we started with their bookshelves and I said to them “go through your books and put aside any that you won’t read again or like”. So they got to work and I was really impressed at how well they did. In fact maybe too well. There were a few moments where I wanted to say, “This one? Are you sure?” because some of those books that were making their way to the “to go” box were some of my favorites (Judy Blume anyone?) from when I was a kid.
But my favorites don’t need to be their favorites.
I held my tongue because I want them to learn to make their own decisions. I want them to keep what they use and love and nothing else because after all it’s just stuff. To learn that lesson now rather than when they’re adults living in homes filled with clutter that they can’t bear to part with.
No I don’t want that for them.
My job is to facilitate the PROCESS. To walk them through the steps and help set up organized systems that work for them. We’ve been doing this since they were little and each time it gets easier and easier. They make up their minds faster and they know to work within their boundaries and limits. They have a better understanding of what it means to own stuff but not let that stuff own them.
Our “to go” pile:
I’m very proud of my kids. They were tough this go around. More so than any other time I think. We were all exhausted when it was done but it was so worth it and the lessons learned are what mattered the most.