Saturday, May 27, 2017

But I Don't Want All the Feels, or I Hate Change, Part 12

If you don't read XKCD, you should. But this one is still my favorite. And it describes perfectly how I feel right now.

[Sidebar, if you want a great catalogue of wrongs, you should read Anne Kennedy's blog, Preventing Grace. She keeps a better tally than I ever could and writes with a lot more polish. She even has a book!]

But I digress.

One of the results of reexamining traumas of the past, of unwrapping all the crusty bandages I've wrapped around my heart, is that my emotions are rather more, well, present. And I have spent the last 24 hours irritated with everything. Lots of someones on the Internet are wrong, but so is everyone else, including me.

I read this cartoon about women shouldering more of the burdens at home and even though it barely applies to me (dear husband is actually very helpful in the home, in addition to working a full time job in order to provide our daily bread), I was irritated. I spent most of the last week getting ready for the people who clean my house to come yesterday afternoon (yes, it really does take us that long to pick up our crap!) and when they were done, it was wonderful for about 5 minutes. Because then I remembered all the piles of stuff that I had just stacked higher instead of sorting them and throwing away half of it, because I was in a hurry to clear all the flat surfaces for cleaning. Half of the clothes in my closet don't fit me. I'm sure I have at least a dozen pairs of shoes and I only wear 4. What is wrong with me? Why can't I just let go of the stuff?

I have no difficulty sorting through my children's possessions. Books are recycled (if they got partially et), given to cousins or donated to the library. Alex shreds most his clothes before he grows out of them, so I rarely have problems there. Miranda's clothes go to her much smaller cousin in hopes that someday, she can wear them. Stuffed animals go in the trash when we're done with them. We had bed bugs once; once paranoid, always paranoid. Miranda, our budding artist, is having a problem with keeping every scrap of paper she ever drew a stick figure on but even then, paper doesn't take up that much space. Alex has two bins of birds. Here is a small sample.

But I have my childhood stamp collection in a bag in our bedroom, where it's been for nearly 18 months, because I want to give it to someone who'll use it instead of just throwing that part of my childhood away. I have all my favorite books from childhood on one shelf of the magnificent bookcase dear husband built me several years ago (Laura Ingalls Wilder, Janette Oke and L.M. Montgomery) that my children ARE NEVER GOING TO READ. And then there's all the clothes.

It is a truth universally acknowledged that parenting causes weight gain. I was one of the fortunate few who didn't keep my pregnancy weight more than a couple of weeks post delivery. I am, however, one of the many who "eats my feelings," usually in chocolate, from the stress my children cause. And the more stress you add, the less likely you are to take the time to eat healthier foods and exercise.

So I weigh more than I used to and most of my clothes don't fit. But, like almost every woman I know, I haven't given up the dream of someday weighing less and wearing those clothes again. At what point do I give this up? Should I just give away the size 12's and keep everything else. (Actually, I think I did do that last year.) I could get rid of some of the shoes I haven't worn in a dozen years and then I might be able to actually see the floor of the closet. But is that just a token response to a larger problem. And I am the larger problem.

When I started blogging again almost two weeks ago, words flowed easily and I thought this process had a foreseeable end. Now, the more that I look into the abyss, the deeper it gets. I raged at my father in law for years for his hoarding, but here I am, doing the same thing. Grasping my stuff in order to hold on to my past. I hate change.

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