About Hoarding Woes & You

What goes around, comes around. And, when it did, it was as bad as I feared. I spent years avoiding and ignoring. Now the mess is mine. As my family and I sort through, discard and set items aside for sale we strive to remember this: my mom was 87 when she passed last month (A month ago today 5/6/10). For most of her life she was in check. For the past 13 years she went off the reservation. In the end, she spent the last 6 months of her life in my home in hospice. Safe, clean, fed, loved, surrounded by family with no mess, stench, mold, stuff. In the end we built an inestimable memory of her. Now as we do what we must do, we strive to remember her as she finally was in our home. 

Then there is the journey with my Auntie and her massive hoard, her dementia and her passing. The processing of these two women’s lives is unfinished in our minds and hearts. Such is life….the ongoing journey to understand.

This blog is an effort to share some stories that may resonate, provide solace to us, and give others courage to endure, confront and understand.


8 thoughts on “About Hoarding Woes & You

  1. I understand. My mother gave away a lot of her stuff in the 2 years before her death – as though she knew. But even so, when she did finally pass away, there was still a house full of stuff. Fortunately there were 6 of us to share the burden of sorting, keeping, selling, throwing out the huge hoard. I don’t know how only children can handle this.

  2. Joy

    My mother has been providing a clean and healthy home for her mother for a few years now, and we are trying to make headway into the hoard. For my grandmother, it isn’t just a condo, or a house. It is a very large home and her parent’s old home she inherited that is about an hour away. Both are filled to the brim. This is after consolidating 3 storage units down to one.

    The task ahead of me personally is to begin to sanitize the downstairs of the large home and make it livable again. I did a walkthrough over the weekend with my mom and felt the urges to push it all out into a dumpster, and the sense of being overwhelmed by the fact that it would be fiscally irresponsible to do so. But more than anything, I felt horror at the state of the floors which are covered by more dog urine and feces than clean spots. I stumbled across your blog while researching cleaning methods to deodorize and sanitize.
    My husband doesn’t understand my need to see and hear stories about hoarding. I feel it reduces shame and fosters an understanding among those of us who do have to deal with the stuff and the mess.

    So thank you. And good luck to you

    1. Thank you Joy. Your situation sounds most daunting! Misery loves company for sure. I do hope you will have a united front on dealing with these hoards someday…may I just say it cannot all fall to you, other than perhaps your leadership and understanding of the scale of things. I wish you the very best! I always feel free to write too.

      Gary & Mary Jo

  3. Cezane & Michelle

    I love your blog concept, the last line says it all. You have captured my interest, i really look forward to seeing more of your posts 🙂 – Cezane

      1. Cezane & Michelle

        Thank you for your words of encouragement, noted and i am glad to have found a kind heart as yours around here 🙂 Cheers!

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