The Other Stuff

As I’m KonMari-ing my house (organizing all the things), I feel pretty good about it.  I’m now down to a box and a steamer trunk to catalog.  It feels great.

But then I woke up this morning with a sense of dread in my stomach.  Did I throw out too much?  I couldn’t think of anything that I trashed that was of great value to me.  Perhaps this is part of the purging effect: There’s a decent size hole in my stomach.  Now that everything in my house is in running order, perhaps I’m next.  I don’t think my brain has caught up to my KonMari-ed possessions.

I went to church this morning, and on top of the empty feeling inside I’m having a horrible
“Awkward Introvert Day” – which happens occasionally to me.  There was a scripture spoken today that hit me right between the eyes:

So therefore, none of you can become my disciple if you do not give up all your possessions.  (Luke 14:33)

Whoa.  Today’s sermon spoke of the preceding verses of taking stock of your life before before following Christ because it is such an investment, a promise you don’t want to go back on.  The Lord charges us to be good stewards of what we have as well.  The tidying marathon has spiritual implications I hadn’t considered.

I should also add that there are some other things in play right now: I applied for a job, a career change to be more specific, and it’s been a month since my interview with crickets for an answer.  HR assures me the position is still open and has not been filled, as they’re still deliberating (there were many applicants), but I am growing restless for an answer.

On top of that, I decided last spring I wanted to pursue a technical writing certificate.  This was in part to a career change, but even with the possibility of a new career on the horizon, I’ve decided to still pursue it.  It’s an online course through a well known university system, I can swing the tuition, and I could use a challenge in direction with writing – not to mention, it’s a great resume builder, regardless of what career I choose.

I also was asked to be on a leadership committee at church, which I accepted, and now have some behind the scenes planning to do.

And then I decided to KonMari my house!

Perhaps what I’m feeling is just a sense of upheaval.  While I embrace change (I do love adventure!), sometimes too much at once can cause this INFJ to spiral.  I love my quiet time, and this season of life, I believe that will be in short supply.

Despite all the befuddlement, this is where I need to be.  The past few years I’ve been drifting with the wind and currents: now I can feel my sails unfurling.

Here’s to discovering new lands.

 

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I just finished reading Marie Kondo’s “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” and now I understand what all the fuss was about.

And so, I’ve begun to put her methods to use around my house.  I strive to be a minimalist, but I have such a tender heart towards things with sentimental attachment.

And this brought me to my underwear drawer: it was time to face my past.

Stuffed in the back of the drawer were the red satins.  They are beautiful, from Victoria’s Secret: red satin pajamas pants with a button-up top as well as a red satin babydoll nightgown from the same collection.  The pajamas are conservative enough to wear in front of extended family for breakfast; the nightgown is a different story.

Both were a Christmas gift from John after we began sleeping together.  Our tryst had begun only a month before, and with his love language being gifts, this shouldn’t have come as a surprise.  But it did.  He loved the covered up look, hence the pajamas.  I loved the revealing look, hence the babydoll nightgown.  It spoke volumes to this writer’s heart: something for both of us to enjoy.  I thought it was a bit extravagant for a friendship that had a sexual component, but I was still thrilled.  I remember looking at him, thinking, “Is this more serious than I think it is?” I was the one who wanted a relationship; he was the one that always backed away.

This was all years ago, well before I had my toes firmly planted in sand at the beach.  I’ve worn them only a few times since the days of John and I, but they were always there, in the back of my underwear drawer.  They weren’t even folded nicely.

Using Marie’s guidelines, I need to let them go.  It is part of my past and I have moved far beyond that girl that was messing around with John. Why am I keeping them?  I lost touch with John, mostly on purpose; our friendship wasn’t one to bring into a marriage, as we never officially settled our past – if there even was something to settle – I never quite knew where “we” stood.  I know where he lives, I know what he does for a living, and I know he has a serious girlfriend, and in all honestly, that’s all I want to know.  As much as I’d love to meet up with him in a coffee shop and catch up on the last decade, I prefer him in the past. I don’t know the man he is now, as he doesn’t know the woman I am (….or was, I don’t believe he ever fully understood me back then).

But this stupid intimate wear is the last link I have to this deeply rooted amorous friendship.  That’s what Marie made me realize.  Perhaps that’s why I subconsciously never parted with it.

“By handling each sentimental item and deciding what to discard, you process your past.  If you just stow these things away in a drawer or cardboard box, before you realize it, you past will become a weight that holds you back and keeps you from living in the here and now.  To put your things in order means to put your past in order, too.  It’s like resetting your life and settling your accounts so that you can take the next step forward.” (Marie Kondo)

One thing is for sure: I have to get rid of the pajamas.  They were for him, which brings a different connotation to it.  Marie constantly asks in her book, “Does it bring you joy?”

It did.  But now….not so much.  Regret.  Uncertainty.  Vagueness.  And they’re a size too big for my frame.  Definitely not joy.

The nightgown still fits me perfectly and it’s beautiful, I feel so sexy in it!  I will keep it.  While John is nothing but a memory now, all that remains is an alluring piece of fabric.  I am keeping it because I feel joy, it makes me feel good, not because it’s connected to John. I have another piece that was given to me; the way it makes me feel trumps the giver.

The purging and organizing continues.  Here’s to moving forward into the future the Lord has set out for me.  I am ready.  More than ready.