letting go

Does throwing out the empty boxes my husband stores with the intention of using someday make me a bad wife? Or donating his old t shirts, video games and unmatched socks? In my mind, it’s being tidy. At least, that is what I tell myself as I flip open the lid to the trash can.

Hoarding should come naturally to me. After all, I come from a long line of stackers, packers, fill the closet/cabinet/garage and shut the door tight. Plus, I think I was a squirrel or a mouse in a past life.

However, now I am the courageous defier of clutter, sworn to fight hoarding or die trying.

Woe to the fool who dares to meddle with the order of disorder.

Of course, Messy Boy thought it fitting to bring up my solemn vow when sorting through the contents of the closet. I held a black purse in my hand and a fanny pack in the other. Coats were strewn across the back of the couch. The cats were sneaking into position on the coats, targeting the black, wool one on which to shed their fur.

“It’s still a good purse,” I fretted.

He raised an eyebrow, with a questioning look that said, Really?

What if I need a mid-sized black purse? What if I lose my normal purse and need a backup right away? What if I go another year without using it?

I don’t want to end up in a house with stacks of boxes leaning against the walls, shelves of tiny teacups and a horde of porcelain cat statues, but I also don’t want to be a minimalist. By that, I mean I want to keep my husband and just a few cat statues.

So I am working on controlling my impulse to pitch what looks useless or dust covered especially if its not mine. Instead, I slowly move those of-concern things towards the door, little by little. Sometimes, they move into the trunk of my car for another chance to be noticed and rescued.

Then I think about how Messy Boy would miss his old baseball helmet or the extra cutting board, and how much he loves his old sweater. Maybe I could use that black purse?

And the junk/treasure moves back inside, and I realize that you can’t always fight what’s in your nature.

nose blind?

cat3
Recently, we were expecting company and up against the clock to prepare for their arrival. The house was a wreck, but only because of our three roommates. To put it simply, they are hairy, lazy bums. When they aren’t lounging on the couch or hacking up hairballs, they are kicking litter out of their boxes, digging in the potted plants, or tearing up random mail/papertowels/anything they feel like destroying.

And they don’t even pay rent!

In any case, we launched into a crazy, cleaning frenzy. We swept, mopped, dusted, and scrubbed. The fridge was cleared of mold covered leftovers, the trash was bagged, and the clutter was organized. After a few hours, the place was spotless from top to bottom. The floors gleamed and the windows sparkled.

It was impressive what we accomplished that afternoon. Our roommates came out of hiding (they hate the vacuum and all cleaning activities) and sniffed the air. They inspected each room before throwing themselves onto the couch with bored yawns and meowed for an early dinner. Bums, right?

As I put the cleaning supplies away, I heard spritzing from the next room. The spritzing noise traveled through the rest of the house. I tried to quietly creep towards the sound and was stopped by a scent-wave of artificial wild orchids that stuck in my throat.

Coughing through the mist and covering my eyes, I escaped into the unpolluted air of the living room. I found my darling husband with a bottle of febreze and a determined on look on his face. He was carrying out a self-imposed mission to spread the potent odor of fake flowers throughout our home.

When he saw me choking on the sweet air, he stopped and smiled.

With the bottle in one hand, he explained, “It’s in case we’ve gone nose blind from the cats.”

I couldn’t argue with him and suddenly feared it was true. This was something that I had heard about somewhere…the nose blind concept.  Could we have gone nose blind and even with all of that cleaning, the smell of stinky cats still lingered?

How embarrassing.

Nose-blindness is a stealthy condition that slowly overtakes olfaction when exposed to less pleasant smells on a regular basis. It’s an adjustment of the senses to a new normal that happens without one’s self-awareness of the change.

Yet again, he saved me, the hero of my senses.

Of note:

Later, I remembered where I heard about this condition.  The same place where I get all of my other reliable information, commercials from tv, of course.  This is a real condition, if conditions that are invented and coined by huge corporations as part of advertising strategies are real. The first article listed below actually uses science to explain the phenomenon. Whoa!

Check it out.

Here are some links:
http://nymag.com/scienceofus/2014/08/why-cant-you-smell-your-own-home.html
http://www.febreze.com/en-US/noseblind
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=noseblind