Your youngest is off to college. You’ve been through this before, and it doesn’t get any easier. Time to start writing that new chapter, and looking for the silver lining. It’s there; you can see it through your tears. The difficult teen years are over; your kids will become independent young adults and you’ll start to share meaningful conversations like, “I know I haven’t even finished my first semester yet, but, if I get at least a 2.5, can I go to Fiji for spring break?” Feel better now? Good. Let’s move on.
You probably have lots of great ideas to propel you forward, but everybody needs a little help now and then. What you really need is a storage unit to begin your new life. It’s not a trip to Fiji, but it’s a start.
If you read our last article, Self-Storage – Keep It Safe For College Kids, you have a good idea of why your kids need storage at college and how to find a secure facility. Now it’s your turn. Let’s see why you need storage.
Use the Space
If you are anything like me, you want to keep your child’s room as a shrine in which you can worship at the altar of the trophies they received for “showing up.” Maybe you should think a bit more rationally about this. If you rent a storage unit, you can keep the mementos and furniture and temporarily re-purpose the room into something useful. Maybe you’d like a sewing or crafts room or an exercise area. Or better yet, a peaceful space for meditation since you finally have some peace. You can store some of the furniture and maintain everything in pristine condition in a secure, climate-controlled unit. Don’t worry. You can visit the trophies whenever you feel like it. No one will ever know.
Keep the Memories
There will be items that you and your child just cannot part with. Those first little hand prints that are still taped to the wall, the well-loved stuffed animals, or the notes from the sixth grade teacher telling you things that you’d rather not know. In your quest to re-imagine your child’s bedroom you may give fleeting thoughts to disposing of this stuff. If you have a storage unit, you don’t have to throw those things away…yet. Keep those treasures carefully packed away in your unit. Someday, you and your child can laugh (or cry) over them. And you won’t have to pretend that you lost all of these very precious items.
Think About What’s Next For You
This is where I tell you that many parents think about downsizing to a smaller home after their children move on to higher learning. If you’re sure this is something you want to do, go for it. But, only if you have a storage unit. Don’t dispose of items randomly, because you may change your mind. A smaller place isn’t for everyone. If you move back to a bigger place you’ll want your things because you probably won’t be able to afford new things after sending your kid to college and to Fiji. If you have a convenient, climate-controlled storage unit, you can store your belongings while giving yourself time to think about whether this is what you really want.
Think About What’s Next for Your Young Adult
Another issue is whether or not your child will move home after college. Even those that do find employment may want to live at home for 10 or 20 years to save money for a house. You need to be prepared for every alternative. Before you know it you could have your child, a spouse, and 7 grandchildren living with you. Don’t get rid of everything; you have a storage unit!
Remember, self-storage is your solution. It won’t fix all of your problems, but it will be there when you need it.