You know those huge Dumpsters they haul up to clean out those houses on "Hoarding: Buried Alive"?
There is one in my driveway.
I've always been of the mind that if you haven't looked at something in ten years, it's time to throw it out. You cannot hang on to every single thing, regardless of the sentimental value. Because everything has sentimental value. Well, maybe not that rusted tire iron. Or the leftover paneling we dragged from our old house (not MY idea) 23 years ago. But I did find a copy of PEOPLE magazine published the week Bette Davis died, with Bette on the cover. And about 2,000 photographs that never managed to find their way into an album (and probably never will).
I also seemed to have hung on to Every Single Bit of Artwork--And Schoolwork--My Children Ever Completed. I especially love the drawing of my husband, with the caption underneath: MY DAD IS HANDSOM. HE TAKES ME TO BUY LOTTERY TICKETS.
But so far, my favorite has been this...which, I'm terrified, may very well reveal my unintentional Mommy Dearest personality.
The paper, written by Beth in elementary school:
FINISH WRITING THE STORY
On Monday my Mom told me to clean up my room. I forgot and...it got messyer! I still forgot to clean my room!
After dinner...I had to clean my room! It was so messy! I ran upstairs to clean. I looked at the big, big mess. Theair was so much stuff on the flor!
First I... put my close away and started on my poasters.
Next I...put my toys away and mad my bed, threw junk away.
Last I...picked up papers and threw them away to, Then it was clean!
Then Mom came and said...you need to pick up the play room because it was even messyer than your room!
Did I REALLY say that? Beth doesn't remember writing the paper--"I just did the papers and then tried to forget them as soon as possible!"--so there's no way to know if whether or not she made the whole thing up. But I suspect every word there is true.
Now a Nice Mommy would've said something like "Good job! I'm proud of you!" But noooo, Mean Mommy tells her to go clean another room after she busted her 7- or 8-year-old butt getting the first room cleaned.
Yet I'm the one with a garage crammed to hilt with shit, paying $266 for a five-day Dumpster rental because I'm sick of scraping ice and snow off my car every winter, and it'd also be nice to get to the fuse box or the freezer once in a blue moon.