Final thoughts from a reforming packrat!

All right – let’s finish off some unfinished business, shall we!

A few weeks back, I began to tell you, through this column, about the stark realization that I was somewhat of a packrat in denial. It’s a trait that I’ve come by honestly…my mother, who passed away in 2013, a lady I thought very highly of, was a ‘collector’ shall we say and some of the things she collected, we five children tried to encourage her to ‘uncollect’. But to no avail! When the time of her passing came, my wife and I were in put into the difficult position of having to place so much of what she had valued into the garbage. For those of you who have been in that position, you know how tough that can be…and how guilty that can make you feel.

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It was then that I resolved that I was never going to be a ‘collector’…a packrat.

But I think I’ve failed!

Several weeks ago, I was cleaning out a dresser drawer and I came upon a few crossword puzzle books that I had forgotten about. Often, when my wife or children ask me for gift ideas for my birthday or Christmas or Father’s Day, I suggest a good challenging crossword puzzle book. I love doing crossword puzzles!

So, finding these books was like discovering a treasure trove! And I remembered that I had been given a few more over the years, and that I had also bought myself a few. I began to look into the places where I might have put them and, can you believe this, I found over fifty crossword puzzle books that I had ‘packratted’! Each one contains anywhere between fifty and two hundred puzzles – add those to the crossword puzzle cubes that are put out every New Year and all the ones that I’ve clipped and saved from newspapers…well, I estimate that I have somewhere about 7500 crossword puzzles to do!

On one hand, I’m excited about that – I have much to keep me busy when retirement finally comes around, but on the other hand, I don’t think it’s possible for me to be retired long enough to get them all done! I’ve collected more than I can possibly finish. Add that to the six thousand books in my library…and the nine thousand emails in my inbox…and the one hundred and one Chicken Soup For The Soul Books…and the hundred or so movies on my PVR…well I’ve come to realize that I’ve become more like my mother than I wanted to be!

But, I’ve resolved to change that before my three kids discover that truth about me when they are cleaning up my estate! I wonder…is there such a thing as ‘Packrats Anonymous’?

Please join us this Sunday at Pierson Bible Chapel at 9:30 am. But…only after you’ve changed your clocks back before you go to bed on Saturday evening!  

© Melita New Era