the Traveling Writing Room
A lofty goal
Epilogue: The elections are over. Here are my last words on the matter: Pray for them, all of them. The End.
The other night I helped clean out a storage area at my church. It was your typical storage room, so full, the back corner had not seen the light of day since 1984. If we’d organized it in alphabetical order it would have started with artificial flowers and ended with zombies (not really zombies but aren’t scare crows just about the same thing? Think about it.
A few months ago, we moved my 91-year-old mother into independent living. That meant cleaning out and selling her house. You know where I’m going with this, right? There were five closets, a garage and an attic. Picture the ‘other side of the moon’ where items lurked from past decades, like mood rings and crinolines, and rabbit-ear antennas and bag after bag of well, bags.
Clutter. It closes in on us in bits and pieces and before we know it, we’ve started using the bathtub as a ‘catch all’. I envy those who toss out and thin out and organize regularly. All three of them. Most of us have at one time cleaned out a closet or a garage and when done stepped back and admired the recently purchased shelves lined with newly purchased plastic bins with lids and labels. We swore to ourselves we would keep it this way forever. Two months later what do we got? Plastic bins with missing lids, and a croquet mallet housed with several Santas and one plastic pink flamingo.
We are a people of good intentions. Full of resolve and pride one minute and a drooling, overworked bag of bones the next, whose sock drawer would be perfect if we only had one foot.
So, what can, and should we do about this? Beats me. I try. When my house was full of children and a husband my mantra was ‘put everything back where it belongs’. Today, I live alone. Yeah, well, I guess I was the messy one all along.
I guess my only bit of advice today is keep trying to organize and declutter. It’s a lofty goal. Pursuing it will keep us one step ahead of being a guest on that hoarder’s show. Is that still on TV? On those rare days we catch our homes and garages clutter-free, bow and give thanks. Kick your shoes off, one at the door, the other who-knows-where and rest, because you know that tomorrow there’s a possibility you might eventually find your car keys in a little plastic bin labelled ‘screws’.