Let it go

30 years ago I had the best closet to go through for dress up days and sorority parties. My friend, 60 years my senior, had saved about everything she owned. I barely remember her shopping for anything new except for my wedding. Her wardrobe to me was a 70’s goldmine. Years later after Katrina, she declared that she wanted to box up some clothes for the victims. Unfortunately our conversation turned awkward when I laughed thinking she was joking. No matter how bad things were, no one wanted her polyester pants suit from the 70’s. They’re perfectly good clothes. They had been well taken care of, but they were horribly out of style. Later I was helping my sister move to her first apartment. We had huge closets, and she had a lot of clothes.  I pulled out a sweater.  Ok, this has to go! No, you aren’t going to wear it. Even if you wanted to wear it, I wouldn’t let you. Seriously, when did you buy this? Sophomore year? Of high school? I promise-there is no occasion unless there is an 80’s dress up day at your job that you will wear that sweater… I convinced her to donate a lot of her old clothes. It was hard. She had a large collection that made her feel comfortable. She might need that. The truth is that many of us hoard clothes “just in case”. We might lose that weight. I might need a white blouse. By the time we can finally let it go, it is out of style. Recently, my goal was to give nice, new gifts to some of our teenagers. I didn’t want people to go to our Walmart. I wanted more for them. I encouraged the counselors to have them make wish lists of their wildest dreams. One girl was thrilled with her American Eagle jeans. They were new. They were hers. They weren’t the flared leg, used jeans with the stain while everyone else had the new slimmer, straight legs. I know that we pack up our old clothes that may have been shoved in the back of our closet for 10 years and think, someone can use this. Someone will be thankful to have this.  And some are. But the reality is that most of us spend way too much money on clothes we never wear and then we hang onto them for way too long. I urge everyone to shop smarter and donate sooner.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *