Archive for January, 2011

I had it.  Until yesterday.  Or today.  Not sure.  I’m positive it was tucked in a corner around here somewhere.

I have been decluttering.  Yes, those who actually know me have just sucked in a collective gasp.  I am not a neat person.  I am a very emotional person and often attach those emotions to physical objects.  And I’m not task oriented or structured or focused enough to actually go through all my stuff and decide what is worth keeping versus what is actually trash.  And I’m not that bothered by clutter.

Bad combo, aye?

I’ve started seeing these attributes in my kids, though.  You know what?  It’s not pretty.  It’s not joyful.  It’s not calming or peace-inducing or anything good.  Nothing good about it.  And my kids are like that now.  Shame on me.

It’s been getting to me lately, though.  And, importantly, to Baldman.  He has never been the cluttery-hold-on-to-everything type of person.  He was actually quite Type A when we met 19 years ago.  A little too much so for my comfort.  Now, well, now he’s living in the midst of clutter.  And it bothers him.  And you’d think it would bother him enough to maybe do something about it.  But, you know what I think?  I think he gave up.  I think he tried for awhile, years even, but then just gave up.  Because his best friend?  She didn’t care enough to help him.  Even worse, she maintained a space that was uncomfortable for him.  Shame on me.

Now though?  It’s bothering me, too.  Some of the clutter, and mostly the spirit that it fosters.  Chaos, instability, frustration, other things I can’t think to name right now.  I’m done with it.  I’m ready and eager to let go.  I’m ready to reclaim my home.

Tonight, we watched Enough Already with Peter Walsh.  We all watched it together.  Baldman, me, and the kids.  Yup, the kids, too.  I’ve never gotten as drowned in my home as the people featured on the show, but I know that I could.  I know that.  And so, we’re doing something about it.  After the show, I helped my daughter go through her armoire.  We quickly packed up a big bag of clothes, and toys and actually spotted a bit of her rug!!!  Baldman went with the boys and, shocker of all shockers, there were night tables under all the crap next to their beds!

The best part was that we all had fun.  Fun reclaiming spots in our home, fun thinking of the friends and others who would benefit from our extra, fun doing something so positive together.  My daughter actually said that she was having fun, and was feeling so good about getting her space back.  Yay for us.

Already this week, I’d taken bags and bags of clothes and books to Goodwill, filled bags for recycling, and shared a bag of boys’ clothes with a friend. And now we have bags and bags sitting waiting for more friends, more recyclables, and more to support Goodwill.  It feels so good.  It feels so freeing.  I think it’s for real this time.

I have other thoughts, but will save them for another time.  I need time with that best friend of mine.  One of the best things about a calm and peaceful home is being able to spend it with your most favorite person in the world. 🙂

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“Mommy, in the summer we can use those water guns again!”  Luke spots the toys in the basement, where they hibernate through the long winter.

In his five year old reality, summer seems another lifetime away.  Outside, snowflakes are rapidly falling to the sidewalks.  He’s home from another grueling week of Kindergarten, already changed out of his uniform and into his jammies.  He sits at the table, sipping hot chocolate.  It’s a great day, because he gets marshmallows AND whipped cream.  Life doesn’t get much better.  In his eyes, these chilly days are far removed from the pool and suntanned days of summer.

For me, it will be like the blink of an eye until their little browned bodies are running barefoot through the grass.  Just a quick flip of the calendar, and we’ll be seeing swimming lessons and days dedicated to the splashpark  littering the schedule.    Boots will be packed away, and socks will be forgotten for a season.  Bring out the Crocs and the flip-flops and we’ll all be ready to go.

Mommy time is so much different than kid time.  I sometimes feel like their birthdays come around weekly, and the time between Christmases seems to be only a matter of a few months.  Everyone told us that their growing up would fly by; told us until we were about to lose our patience hearing it.  Really, how many times can you politely smile at the same inane statement?  We knew it would be true; we know it has been true.  And yet, the reality of it seems to almost defy the laws of chronology.

So, in what will feel like a breath to me, and a lifetime to him, my little boy will trade his snowsuit and gloves for swimtrunks and goggles.  We’ll have a spring, summer and fall full of new friends, new activities, and far too many photos than the kids will ever want to entertain.  And a year from now, with the snowflakes falling and the cocoa steaming, I’ll wonder again, “How in the world has another year gone by?”

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