Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Lightening the Load

I am at a very interesting juncture in my life. I have spent the past 18 months going through and cleaning out every drawer, closet and corner of my home. Most of it was necessitated because I needed to sort through D's things; most because I was still deciding if I was going to sell the house or stay put.

During this time, I've had the entire interior and exterior of my home redone. Every window and door is new. Every wall and baseboard is newly repainted. Out-of-date bathrooms are remodeled, and "popcorn" ceilings have been scraped and refinished. Fans and light fixtures are updated. I've installed seemingly new "everythings" down to the light switch plates and doorknobs.

My closets, drawers and shelves are mostly empty. There is really not one square inch of the house that has not been updated or organized. How often can we come to that place in life? I have two things to say about that:

1. I cannot believe that I had the emotional energy to complete or contract out these jobs in my initial stages of grief.
2. I am loving the freedom of not having all the "stuff", and I do not intend to go back to my old cluttery ways.

Seriously. On my antique field trip last week, I determined that I would not buy anything that would need to be refinished, repainted or reupholstered. I am done with all of the Some Day Projects. DONE!

I want to luxuriate a the totally project-free life. I hear my inner voice tell me on shopping trips, "If you take that home, you have to find a place for it and you have to care for it." And then I return it to the store's shelf.

People: I am a woman who had a Mary Englebreit collection with assorted items that numbered in the thousands. I am not making that number up. And I am hoping they earned Goodwill a lot of money after I donated them.

I feel free to do things I want to do, because I am no longer held prisoner by items that need to be taken care of. Yesterday on the way home from school I stopped for a movie at a theater that serves great pizza without a lick of guilt. Because I was all caught up with chores at home. On a Tuesday.

I'm kind of heady with the freedom of it all. And I can't wait to see what God would have me do with the free time and energy.

Just call me Mary. Because Martha has left the building.


Dawn said...

Your post made me chuckle out loud...

I've taking down Christmas decor, cleaning closets (that were in a state that I would have simply passed out had anyone opened the door!), emptying drawers, etc. It feels good. I am determined dto keep going.

Let's have coffee or tea some day soon! I want to hear about your new church and the children's ministry position. But, I have to admit that I feel a little sad to know I won't see your smiling face at "my" church now!

Call or email!

susan said...

'Two roads diverged in a wood,
and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.'
no matter what decision you make, you will know that you have taken your time; been lead methodically; guided and strengthened by faith. you deserve to live your joy. it's okay to be happy. I am very happy for you.

Sarah said...

Yay, Mary! That's awesome. And inspiring for me with my cluttery ways.

Man, am I coveting your new ceilings. I hate our popcorn ceilings!

Gina said...

"Just call me Mary because Martha has left the building" too funny! we really could be friends in real life. I have a list of decluttering projects and have purchased the bins and baskets to corral the stuff that stays but have yet to get started. I know once I do there will be no stopping me! Move over Mary, Martha is about to get busy!

sue.anne.mckinney said...

I love that last line about Mary and Martha!!! What a great post. I am amazed at how much you have done in such a difficult season. It's true how free you feel w/o the accumulation of 'things' to care for. I rejoice with you this morning!