One of my goals for this weekend was to tempt the Minnesotan fates by putting my winter clothes away and to clean out my closet for the spring and summer. Due to my clearance shopping habit and the fact that I’ve been at least four different sizes in the last five years, I have A LOT of clothes. My closet was crammed and I knew there were a lot of things that I haven’t worn in at least a year. In the past I’ve sometimes had a hard time letting go of clothes due to some combination of hope (maybe I’ll be a size 16 again some day?), Calvinist guilt (some of those clothes still have tags on them, quantifiable evidence of money wasted), and an overactive imagination that allows me to imagine scenarios where I might, maybe, someday wear that denim blazer.
But in the last year, I’ve started to find it easier to get rid of things. I’m not sure if it is due to being 40, aka the “fuck it” decade, according to my friend’s who are further ahead into this decade than I am. Maybe it’s because we’ve been in this 1400 square foot house for almost five years and I’m quite aware of how quickly that space fills. But I think a bigger part of it is that I’m feeling more at peace at some basic level with myself.
I ended up filling five garbage bags with clothes, including a deep purge of the clothes that I’ve been hanging onto in the hopes that I’ll be smaller someday. I felt almost instantly lighter afterwards.
It feels a little cheesy to say it, but I think I’m maybe just getting better overall at letting things go. I had a realization the other day that a pretty significant family member just … well, doesn’t like me very much. Maybe they love me, whatever that means to them, but they don’t actually like me. And, honestly, it makes sense. We don’t share the same values, we don’t have any common interests, and we don’t actually have much in the way of a relationship at this point. As someone who has spent literal years (plus thousands of dollars in therapy) to learning to come to terms with the fact that not everyone is going to like me all the time, the fact that I feel at peace about not being liked by someone who shares my DNA feels pretty significant.
I don’t have to be for everyone. I don’t have to keep pants that don’t fit.
Maybe the 40’s really are the fuck it decade.