Yesterday, with the help of my good friend Meghan, I finally dealt with my apartment. I say 'dealt with' because the mess and clutter was just as much psychological as it was physical.
I am a messy person to begin with. I'm not a very good organizer and my time-management skills are almost non-existent. Combine all that with the fact that I deal with clutter the same way I deal with all my other problems; out of sight, out of mind... and you start to understand my predicament.
Over several hours, we completely gutted the place. Closets, drawers and shelves were emptied, their contents strewn over the living room and sorted into garbage/recycle, charity and keep. The smallest pile by far was the 'keep' pile.
The end result is that I now have a fairly organized and clean-ish apartment that is mostly ready for my fiance to move into. More importantly, I've been forced to deal with everything I've been keeping packed away. And not just the old papers and knick-knacks. For some reason when we started pulling everything apart, I hadn't anticipated all the skeletons coming out too. Not all were bad, (some were very well dressed) just a lot of mementos of people and places I'd done my best to forget, or at the very least, not think about. People that had hurt me, people I'd hurt, old friends I've out-grown (or who've out grown me), past successes and failures, bittersweet memories, old favourites, and many, many mistakes. All the things that have culminated in the person I am today.
I took a good long look. I said a silent prayer. And I let go.