First: let us be incredibly clear that I will always be a hoarder of enormous magnificence… ALWAYS.
I am getting rid of CRAP, not my precious… I am absolutely able to tell the difference; it’s just that I thought I HAD to keep the crap.
Of course, most of my things are not actually crap— the stuff that was good, I donated.
Did I think about having a yard sale/estate sale?
Did I think about selling it all piecemeal on eBay even though that is LITERALLY THE VERY WORST THING I CAN IMAGINE AND THE VERY LAST WAY I WANT TO SPEND ANY OF MY EXISTENCE?
MORE than think about it, I felt I MUST… because I am RESPONSIBLE! These are MY THINGS; I am REQUIRED to dispose of them PROPERLY!
But at some point, all of THE STUFF became so deeply overwhelming that I realized how violently I did not want to deal with it.
The idea of forcing myself to undertake a massively stressful endeavor… to FLOG MYSELF to continue wading through this SWAMP OF CRAP. For literally no reason other than GUILT OVER LEMON SQUEEZERS.*
I finally saw: that is LITERALLY insane.
I finally saw: I am not REQUIRED to torture myself with DISHES.
You can CHOOSE to be DONE with irrelevant noise.
Stress is for IMPORTANT things.
I cannot express how astonishing this is.
WHY DID NO ONE TELL ME?
*Paul once brought me a box of vintage juicers because he enables my hoarding if it is free.
I see now, this is why Marie Kondo wants you to pile— to help your brain get to a place where you consider the simple option of CHOOSING YOUR OWN SANITY, over decades-old-crap to which you have some weird attachment and unspecified guilt.
I did not do it the way she suggests – which is to make a GIANT MESS… But after trying it my way, I see the wisdom of hers; because the more I went through, the more I saw was unwanted. And the more I saw was unwanted, the more I understood that I have not been keeping this stuff because I LOVE it… I am keeping it out of FEAR: fear of regret, fear of making a mistake.
But! Even though I SEE this, I still have a deranged attachment to clothing, circa 2004, that I will not ever wear again but cannot detach from because WHAT IF I NEED THESE SHOES I WOULD FEEL REALLY BAD AND MAD THAT I GOT RID OF THEM SO I SHOULD JUST KEEP THEM FOREVER EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE TACKY.
As MUCH as I do NOT want to pile, I WANT THE NEXT BRAIN PLACE… I want to be DONE with unwanted clutter— >I am not REQUIRED to store guilt and discomfort in my home.
I think I’m going to have to pile.
However, the time to empty all of your closets is not when your partner‘s mother is receiving hospice… an awkward preamble to share with you that Paul’s mother passed… Parkinson’s.
Her decline began four years ago… The last two have been really hard. The last one, frightening. Paul has shouldered an enormous burden— he has been on-call for four years; it is a stratospheric undertaking to be the caregiver.
Watching Paul usher his mother towards death was harrowing, but revelatory. I am in awe of him… he is a human unlike any other. Paul SHOWS UP. And WORKS. Until there is NO MORE WORK… Love is what you DO; words are meaningless.
How is Paul?
He’s doing okay.
He takes a lot of comfort in the time he spent with his mom; especially at the end— he lived there while she was getting hospice… I do not THINK he is going to have a nervous breakdown, but if he does that is fine.
So… that is where we are– re-acclimating to our life. Last night, Paul put up the hammock and we just hung out. He didn’t have to go zoom around in his cape of competence. Mister Cat joined us for the three seconds it took him to determine he does NOT like the earth swinging around under him.
Then we watched Free Solo… which I beyond loved— obsessive. intense. completely ununderstandable to anyone but himself… and actually, this is my last blog post because scratch what I said about Paul, I am going to go live in a van with some mountain dudes.