May 16

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Beheading another sacred cow

I am constantly working to cleanse and streamline my world – cleaning up old beliefs, purging and rectifying old behaviors, and getting rid of stuff that doesn’t have meaning for me.  No matter how carefully I do it, once in a while I’ll get slapped upside the head with something really obvious that I missed.

Over the weekend I finally switched my closet from winter clothing to summer clothing.  Finally.  Mid-May and hopefully the snow is  gone for good.  Fingers crossed.

This morning I put on a shirt that I haven’t worn in quite a while.  It’s a great color and I like the cut, but it’s missing a button and another button is sewn on with thread that is very obviously the wrong color.  I decided to wear it today anyway with a promise to myself that I’d fix the button situation when I got home.

I stopped at the store and got the right color thread and I was ready to go.  I knew that I had the missing button somewhere, but where?  And then I remembered the box in the back of my closet that has a big collection of buttons in it.  Every once in a while, I’ll gather all the extra buttons that are attached to new clothes and drop them in the box.  Lo and behold, when I sorted through the box, there was the lonely missing button.

I’ve been putting buttons into that box for at least 20 years.  Surely I don’t have all of the clothes that the buttons belong to, do I?  And at some point in my crazy past, I actually bought buttons thinking I’d do something really crafty like make clothes to put them on.  Yeah, right.

Button, button, I'VE got the button! Just a few of the buttons I sorted through tonight

I sorted through the buttons tonight.  I wish I’d taken a picture before I started, because most of them were in their own individual envelops and they took up a TON of space.  By the time I was done, they all fit into a little baggy.

Every time I’ve had spare buttons floating around, the thought of taking down that box and seeing all of those old buttons irritated me. It made me feel like a failure – I hadn’t perfectly labeled the buttons so I didn’t know what clothes they went with, and I’d never made any of the clothing that I’d once dreamed of.

Tonight I slew the sacred cow.  I am keeping some buttons that (I’m pretty sure) go to things that I still own.  But most of them will go with me to the next clothing swap I have with my girlfriends.  And if none of them want the buttons, I’ll take them to the Salvation Army.  Surely they’re good for someone…just not me.

And here’s something really cool – I was quoted in this article about helping your kids to have a good body image.  Check it out!  🙂

About the author

Leah Carey

Leah Carey is the Chief Miracle Officer of The Miracle Journal, where she writes about the large and small miracles that happen in her life every day. She is a life coach, speaker, journalist, freelance writer, and lover of life. In all of those pursuits, she works with people to identify what’s already right in your life so you can build an even more joyful and fulfilling daily experience from that foundation. You can find her on Facebook, , Twitter, and YouTube.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.leahcarey.com/themiraclejournal/2011/05/16/beheading-another-sacred-cow/


  1. Eileen Alexander

    HI Leah:

    Loved this column. I’ve been purging bureaus over the past couple of weeks and having similar thoughts — I have so much paper, reams and oodles of it, and every piece has something written on it, but if I haven’t done something with those bits of writing in 10 years or more I probably never will. So…to the dump!

    As far as your buttons go, I’d be happy to take them off your hands, as I use buttons in some of my mosaic projects and would be grateful to have more to add to the stash.

  2. Leah Carey

    You’re on, Eileen! 🙂 Just send me an email about how to get them to you and they’re yours. I love the idea that they’ll be used to make something beautiful!

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