On Tuesdays I join Suzanne at The Coloradolady for some brain exercise with thought provoking prompts for Tell Me Tuesday. Here is today’s prompt:
What should you avoid to improve your life?
I think my White Tornado project is all about avoiding clutter, which neither David nor I do well. I have a gazillion reasons to avoid clutter, the most obvious is that with clutter comes crowding and running things over with the walker or just plain tripping and falling. In a very tangible way, clutter should be a number one enemy to me. But clutter is a friend and foe from way back.
“If you kept things neater, I wouldn’t have to throw the baseball cards away in the winter. You’ll get more next year.” She even threw my Pete Rose and Al Kaline cards away and those ones were in my jewelry box. The clutter is hereditary. Mom got it from Grandma, but Grandma didn’t collect baseball cards as a kid. Mom threw away Mark Fidrych’s rookie card but Grandma threw away Al Kaline’s rookie card! It’s a cycle of abuse I say!
I paid $8 as an adult to replace one of the Pete Rose cards I’d had as a kid. The same time I bought the Pete Rose, Mom bid on an Al Kaline card that was on an auction style board at the card shop. At the end of the week, she paid $25 to replace that childhood hero. I’d have bid on the Kaline too, but I wasn’t going to bid against my own mother and I could not have swallowed the eventual sticker on it! Today those two cards flank the top of my chest of drawers in the bedroom in thick Lucite protectors.
But you see? Clutter cost me $8 as an adult for something that was one in a pack of 20 for 15 cents when I had it originally. Those cards won’t be for sale again until my estate sale.
As a kid, I saw a movie where someone woke up under a blanket and a pile of papers to answer the phone. His home was total clutter and he was renowned for his success in the movie. I thought that would be me when I grew up. No one would ever tell me to clean my room or throw away my baseball cards because I was successful. But that was a movie and I didn’t grow up to be a movie.
As a teenager, my room was often incredibly cluttered. It was also often neat organized and pristine. I found that a little clutter was good for creativity, but when my room got too cluttered, my mind got cluttered. When the clutter was too much for my usually very organized brain, I’d stop and clean. I pulled all-nighters organizing my room and moving furniture. I think it was subconscious Feng Shui. The point is cleaning the room cleared my mind, moving furniture inspired new ideas.
That’s what I need right now, the White Tornado. This is the first time it’s had a name, but not the first time it’s come to my world! At 46 and physically challenged, I can’t do it as fast as I could at 16, but it has the same effect. While working in the woman cave today, I took a couple short breaks and just sat in front of the bathroom vanity. It was like a Zen garden.
My life will improve when I get rid of and avoid too much return of clutter. Right now, I need to avoid living in my bathroom!
My Zen Garden
(The souvenir popcorn helmets are just placeholders until I get the proper baskets.)