Thursday, October 7, 2010

If Only I Were a Tree

You might finally be able to convince me that fall is actually here, or on it's way,  or in some way the change of seasons is happening.  You couldn't last week, but now with the rain and the cooler temperatures, and most of all with the fact that with only parking for 15 mins on Main Street, downtown, my car was covered in little yellow leaves.  In fact the street is littered with them.  Too small to pick up or rake, but turning the whole street yellow nonetheless.  As I ran the windshield wipers to clear those leaves it FINALLY felt like fall.

Everyone keeps assuring me it's fall, I mean before the leaf thing.  People kept insisting it's October.  It just didn't feel like it.  Now though, I guess I'm a believer.  I honestly hope it stays, despite having a summer birthday, it's just too hot to really enjoy that much.  I mean I love camping and getting out, but as a responsible adult I barely get to do those things anymore (and when did I become a responsible adult anyway?).  Fall, if it weren't for the collective insanity that always seems to accompany it - maybe that's just living in a University town - really would be a wonderful season, except...

I'm feeling the need to withdraw.  I've barely wanted to touch my computer and I have definitely not wanted to leave the house.  Yet, inside my house other problems persist.  While autumn triggers my desires to withdraw and bunker down for the long wet slog into winter, an old family trait makes bunker down a tenuous balancing act.  I am the full blood descendant of hoarders, not just my parents, but both of their parents, well maybe not my maternal grandma.

Now you see the problem right?  As I close the door locking myself and my children in, we are cramped into not only the narrow walls that make up our living space, but also the clutter that is our hoard.  Not the kind of hoarding that makes for good TV mind you.  I don't have boxes stacked in clusters with ever narrowing paths and I burn all the newspaper in the house, we recycle and trash "normal" things as do my relatives.  The hoarding comes when we have so many things that are useful, or potentially useful, or something I've meant to do something with, or something useful that someone gave me and I just feel guilty dumping it in the dump, yet I haven't taken it to be donated either.

This is compounded by the limited space where we live.  In all of the 900 sq feet of the primary house we have 2 closets, one bedroom closet and one hall closet.  Everything else, absolutely everything, is pretty much in plain sight.  Sure, I've got bookshelves and a few cabinets in the kitchen, but most everything is tucked away under something, or is in view.  Very few things I own are exactly what I want.  I would love to take four or five items and combine them into one more useful and practical thing, especially in the kitchen, and yeah for the most part those more practical things exist, but the problem is I can't afford them, so I'm stuck.

So wouldn't it be justs so cool to be a tree?  To pull in and let go of all that I no longer need?  To know that there is a spring coming and in that spring I will have the means to make new, to get exactly what I need and nothing else?  If only I were a tree and I could drop everything and in the spring start anew.  Maybe I just really want a fresh start, whether it be now or in the spring.


  1. Yes, there are times where I want to do such a spring (or fall) cleaning that we get rid of everything we don't use daily, and I mean everything. Just back a truck up to the house and start chunking stuff in it. Then, like you, I realize I wouldn't have the money to replace any of it if I did need it, and most of the time I like my "stuff" and so very rarely does anything get tossed. On a cleaning spree, I will often fill two trash bags before running our of steam or being needed by kids, but two trash bags full doesn't even put a dent in all the stuff!
    SC relative

  2. I don't want to clean, I want to go crazy pruning. Unfortunately, I fear I will over prune and things will be worse for it. I really do fear that stuff is a burden that keeps us from doing things that are really important, especially helping other people. At the same time, I don't want us to go without or my kids to go naked because I pruned away the things we have been given.

    After all, you never know when things might be useful, and I love to be able to use what I have to help others....


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