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"STUFF"

Updated: Feb 29

Deep thought of the Day: the junk, we surround ourselves with & take with us each time we move.


The Word: STUFF




Oxford Language Definition:


noun

1. matter, material, articles or activities of a specified or indeterminate kind that are being referred to, indicated, or implied.

2. the basic constituents or characteristics of something or someone

verb

1. fill (a receptacle or space) tightly with something

Informal British

2. used to express indifference or rejection (of something)




Finishing out year 2023 & nose diving into 2024 was an extremely difficult one.  I had one week to close my yoga studio & vacate. That same week signing a lease for a new home for my dogs and I, financially all funds coming in stopped. It was a challenging and difficult end to 2023. Holidays were suddenly very quiet. The man at the time I was dating suddenly vanished without a word between Thanksgiving & Christmas. I mean without a word.  I decided one weekend to see what would happen if I stopped messaging & calling him.  Never heard from him again.  With my home emergency which forced me to move  & closing my studio simultaneously & so quickly, I had 3 storage units at one point in time filled with Stuff  Due to my home emergency & the forced move, it financially cleaned my savings account out.


$8,000 POOF! GONE!



Between the business & nesting in the same rental house for half a decade, I had accumulated a ton of stuff.  A collector of goods, books, fashion, shoes, purses, vintage goods, clothing, & furniture. Not to mention dog items; beds, blankets, toys, all their clothing for winter months. Stockpile of food. As I was raised in New England, I have it instilled in me to always have emergency food ready for blizzards.  Forget about toilettries! Just forget about it! The amount of shampoos: for my blonde dye job, hair nutrition, hair mask, hair serums, hair sprays, root lifters, smoothing, blow drying cream. Oh and make up which I never wear-  tons of it.  High end stuff…. Designer stuff… One of kind Samples from Los Angeles Boutique Fashion Designers! All the crap collected from Marshalls, Ross, HomeGoods from all those unnecessary trips: I am bored (need to get out of the house moods) to get that mini rush of dopamine from shopping to combat loneliness in Arkansas.



STUFF



Lots & lots of STUFF!



It dawned on me a few moments ago as



I am drinking my wonderful hot cocoa with chaga (with an added sprinkle of tumeric) out of my most precious coffee mug. This coffee mug is worthless to anyone but me.  It was a gift from a co-worker whom decided to take me under her wing. It was when I had my first grown up apartment and I had dropped out of college for a year to go work for corporate america as a mutual funds rep.  This mug has survived every move from east coast Massachusetts, to California, to Italy & back to California and now in Arkansas.



This mug has survived a second round of undergrad, when I returned to college in Boston,MA & graduated.  It has survived every failed relationship including my marriage.  It has been there for every new pet that entered my life. The pets who passed on. The pets I left behind with the divorce. And the pets that are with me now.  



This mug represents so much but it’s just a stupid coffee mug.  Zero dollar value as it was a gift from many many moons ago from a complete stranger.



My big aha moment is: it is just a mug. When did I make the value so very high in my mind and in my heart? I have no idea.




Perhaps, it was the kind random gesture from this lady.  I cannot even remember her name. I do remember what she looked like: frosted hair of the early 90’s with bangs and a layered cut & her straight hair landed on her shoulders, she smoked cigarettes, she was super skinny and bow legged with raspy smoker voice.  She had big green or hazel eyes which were big and slightly sunken into her face. She was kind to me. She had enough heart to care for me and wanted me to be okay. I never forgot that feeling.  She was kind to me. A nice stranger cared.



I remember the day she handed me the box of kitchen items.  I didn’t own much at the time.  When I dropped out of college two weeks before I was suppose to go back.  My dad gave me the dodge caravan (as I had crashed & totaled my beloved 1986 chevy cavalier the summer before) & he covered my apartment deposit and first month rent. I was sent off to endure the School of Life.  



My first apartment. It was one of the greatest days of my life! I slept on the floor. My friends helped me steal milk crates from Honey Farms convenience store so we had something to sit on and use as tables to eat off of. Lots of ramen noodles and Banana Peanut Butter Sandwiches, hamburger helper when it was 10 for $10.00 (no meat, could never afford to buy the meat) and to splurge for a meal? it was canned tuna fish sandwiches or purchasing fresh baked bagels.


At the time, I had minimal belongings. Very little STUFF. Gosh, I was so damn happy during this juncture of my life.



It was awesome! Best year of my life living on my own, working in mutual funds by day, fraternity parties by night. I use to run the track every morning at Worcester Polytech Institute 1.5-2 miles with a cigarette dangling from my mouth!



I digress… Back to The MUG.  


It’s just stuff. An inanimate object.


How did it become so important?


I have no idea.



I look around my house today & realized I was surrounded by stuff. The house is still not unpacked.  The garage is jam packed. I have clothes in garbage bags waiting to be hung in a closet or folded into a dresser drawer. Been 5 months since I moved. What is keeping me from unpacking all this STUFF? Why do I have so much STUFF?



A big part of me wants to toss it all and pack the dogs in my car, not tell a soul & just drive away. But I must bring: THE MUG!



My good friend, Sherri, said to me this evening: “You need to stop running away from things.” “Stop running, Cat”



Those statements may be true but I will bring my damn mug with me! Maybe I could be buried with this MUG with the ashes of my beloved Martha dog when she perishes…



Maybe this year… I can finally let go of this STUFF.  Feel a little lighter. To no longer be weighed down by STUFF and to be rooted into the earth and grounded for once in my life. Maybe I can take Sherri’s advice and STOP RUNNING with all this STUFF!



But I think I’d like to keep my stupid, worthless MUG.

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