Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Getting Swept Away

Hubby and I have been picking away at a renovation project in our bedroom. The window (an old slider one) has needed replacing for a few years, and the room has had the same carpet in there ever since we moved in, in 1989. Over the years we got rid of one piece of furniture and bought another, so after a while, nothing matched anymore. 

So, last fall we began making plans to replace the carpet with laminate flooring, and the project got put on hold because other things took priority. 

However, this spring we decided to have it done, once and for all: new window, new floor, and new (and matching) dressers and night-stands.

The window was first to be replaced. A few days ago, a couple of people came to the house and replaced our window with an energy-efficient casement style window. It works great!!

For the past couple of weeks, hubby has been lifting up the carpet. Unknown to us, there were two layers of it in there: the emerald green we knew, and under it - well, let's just say that the previous owners were into the 70s African savannah tree-house motif or something. Eww. And let's not even imagine the dust and the mess.

Anyway, lifting up the carpet meant that we had to unearth the storage bins that seemed to be hidden everywhere. And all of them - I say red-faced - were filled to the brim with my clothes, clothing that I'd accumulated over the last ten years. All different sizes and styles were all jumbled up together - some pieces were winter pieces I had forgotten I owned and had bought new ones, and others were pants as small as size 8 Petite (yes I know that this is not considered small by some standards - but to me it is!) 

Bin by bin, I stood and sorted clothes by destination: closet, dresser, donation, garbage. It was daunting, but I took each bin as it came and dealt with each piece with a critical eye.

Photo "Dustpan And Brush On White" courtesy of artur84

Some of my old favorites were painful to release: they were chock-full of memories of thinner, healthier times. I could picture how I used to look in them. Those were the hardest ones to let go, because they were all tied in with the hope I've had for many years: "Maybe I'll fit into that again." It was the vain hope of turning back the clock that kept me stuck in the never-never land of eternal discouragement when I couldn't measure up to a younger, much thinner me. Letting go of that unrealistic hope was not pleasant. But let go I had to - and after an hour, there was a garbage can full of items, plus three and a half large leaf bags full of various-sized pieces to donate to a local thrift store. 

And you know, afterward, I felt differently than I thought I would. Yes, it was tiring, and yes, it was dirty and I had to take a break from it once in a while because the dust was flying so much and quite frankly, my back couldn't take much more standing still in one spot. However, when I'd sorted the last piece, I felt ... freer somehow, unencumbered, as if the future was not tethered to the past anymore and that if my size changed, I could have the pleasure of shopping for new things that fit and flattered me in the moment. Not ten years ago. 

Sometimes it helps me to simplify my life; lately, it had gotten rather cluttered with a lot of baggage - emotional, spiritual, and mental - that simply didn't need to be there. Doing my "clean sweep" helped to remind me that there are things that are worth holding onto, and there are things that really aren't, and need to be released so that there's room in my life for new things, better and more enriching experiences, and fresh ideas. 

I think that tonight I will sleep well, and I am glad that tomorrow is a new day, full of promise and potential. Everyone needs a fresh start - and I am part of everybody. And it's okay to pare off what doesn't belong and keep only what fits. It helps me stay in today. 

And you know what? Today is pretty good.

No comments:

Post a Comment