I’ve been all in a dither lately. Discovered that I had an accumulation of soul crud and set out to do some serious decluttering.
And because it seems that the state of my soul equals the state of my home, I have discovered that I have an accumulation of crud in my house, too.
The discipline of silence has been doing a pretty good job of stirring up the soul dust and generally making me very uncomfortable. I feel quite like an ugly lizard in the early stages of molting.
The exercise of decluttering is starting to make inroads on the home front. I spent last evening pruning the kids’ bookshelf. And what a revealing exercise it was.
I should keep this book because so-and-so gave it to us. I should keep this book because it’s about cerebral palsy, and that’s a worthy topic – even if the book isn’t well written or well illustrated.
What if I need this someday? What if a year from now I regret getting rid of this? Sometimes the kids like the most surprising books…what if I’m getting rid of a book they might eventually like?
Oh no, I only have five coloring books now, is that enough? (Five coloring books for two little girls who don’t really like to color). I know I don’t like having lots of books based on cartoons, but what if Lia would be interested in reading this Clifford book all by herself?
Should I keep all three copies of “Guess How Much I love You?”…remember how you gave away the extra copy of Goodnight Moon and now your Goodnight Moon is torn and you need a new one?
But painful though it is, now that I’ve gone through them once, I’m tempted to do it again and see if I couldn’t pare down more. There is, after all, a library just down the road. The only books we really need are the read-it-over-and-over books.
Like The Story about Ping. Which we are currently reading over and over. And over. (Amelie :: When the boy got Ping, I had a tear. I don’t like that part.)
Almost our entire book collection (which is really quite vast) are hand-me-downs from friends. So I keep thinking, as my stack of give away books gets bigger, Freely you have received, freely give.
I’ve been thinking alot about my house lately. I’ve been holding onto quite a lot of stuff, just in case we would want it in our future house. But thanks to the Nester, I finally had a dawning of realization :: THIS IS MY HOUSE.
For a renter who has been on the brink of buying for two years, this is a big shift.
So I’m taking a big breath, and sending all the things that I’m not using and loving on out the door. Hopefully out the door through craigslist for some of it, with a few dollars coming back in.
Compound that with the fact that every where I turn there is CRUD everywhere. The small children take things from here or there and drop them on their way hither and yon, and every day as we clean up I say to myself, “We have too much stuff”. After a while I started listening to myself.
I’d rather my life rule my stuff than my stuff rule my life. Both in my home, and in my soul.
If you know what I mean.
And now I’m going to go do some more decluttering. Mindfully, because I’m counting it as a spiritual exercise, too.