Monday, August 20, 2012
No, I really do have a problem, pt 4, the teen years
We moved out when I was nearly 15 to start a new life. Money was tight so a trip to the Dollar Store was a huge treat. We were each allowed to pick out one thing each week so I would often choose lipstick (red) eyeliner (black) or a scrunchie. (it was the 90's, what do you want?) My dad started buying my school clothes my freshman year so my days of hand me downs was over (for a bit).
It was easy that first year not to gather. Any money I made babysitting was squirreled away to pay for driver's ed courses. From that apartment we moved into a larger condo and I had my own room for the first time. I started gathering things again. From fabric for my blooming sewing interest to clothes to books, to little science experiments (that attracted ants) my room would go from disaster to meticulously clean. Most of the time, as long as I kept my door shut and didn't attract ants, my mom was fine with my mess.
The difference was though, that now I had started attaching memories to things. I held onto things to remember so and so. Had to keep this, it was a gift from Grandma. A leaf from a tree that fell on me during lunch. (I was a bit of a flower child) I had gotten rid of many of my stuffed animals, but we all know how those gather up again.
As I got older, I started gathering the things I thought I would need when I moved into a place of my own. A hope chest. Then I turned 18 and moved out, and everything I owned fit into a 5 x 10 storage until while I went to Americorps.
Suddenly, I had disposable income. and was walking distance from Target. I could have anything I wanted and bought it. I have never grown out of this. My roommate stopped getting written up for my mess, which wasn't bad, but wasn't good enough for military standards. I think they stopped writing me up too. I really did try during that year and have memories of a fairly clean space.