Saturday, June 18, 2011


I am trying to clean but all it's doing is making me hot and miserable and my nose is full of dust and I want to either give up or else throw everything I own away. Or at least 99% of it and why do we allow ourselves to become so damn emotionally attached to things?
It's ridiculous and I want to just toss all this crap but wait- one of my kids did this or maybe I'll use this someday or so-and-so gave me this and she's dead now and shitfire.

So what?

If no one else cares, why should I if I don't, really?

I tell you something- if you have a good stiff drink before you clean, you can be far stronger in this practice of letting go. I do not know why that is. It doesn't seem like it should be but it is. For me, at least.
And never once, not ONCE, have I ever thrown anything away and regretted it. Not once.
And if I have thrown something away and someone else asks for it long after the fact, I can honestly answer truthfully, "I have no idea where that is," because I don't. Somewhere, perhaps in a landfill but who knows? Not me.

Well. It is far too early to drink and I can't give up yet. Not yet. You set a goal, you should at least give it good effort. Sometimes I wish I smoked pot. I think that would help with things like cleaning.

Here's what I think: that we are all mostly superstitious fools and we hold on to totems which we somehow, in our reptile brain, believe will keep us safe, will ensure that we shall somehow live forever.
It's not true. But we keep all this shit in our gnarly old grasp until we've forgotten why we're keeping it and then finally, we can toss it out but by that time our bag of shit is heavier than ever with newer, fresher old garbage and we are weighed down until our backs bend beneath the load of it all.

It's like putting that one last spoonful of squash and onions in a container in the refrigerator which you KNOW you are not going to eat and yet, there it sits until it molds. It is not bringing anyone anything of value and the fact is, if we had just thrown it to the chickens or in the compost to begin with the annoying small burden of it sitting there, taking up space in a container which we'll just have to wash, would have been over a long time ago, never even remembered, certainly not missed, and so it should have been.


  1. i'm stepping away from the computer to clean too. i'll check back in with you. sigh. i hold on to things because i'm afraid of being a wasteful American who is filling up landfills. really. i think about that every time i am deciding what to do with ANYTHING. it's exhausting.

  2. Yup. Maggie May and I are stepping away from the computer to clean and toss. After that initial agonizing, I get an almost perverse pleasure in throwing things out until the reptilian guilt steps in: I'm wasting food, This is disgusting how much crap I've bought, I've kept, I have, etc. etc. etc.

    Americans are wimps.

  3. OK me too. Off I go to clean and toss. My them for this summer is give it away, throw it away or put it away. And I don't have much guilt about the throwing away part as so much is recycled or Goodwilled. But how in the hell did my house get so full of stuff and clutter and crap?? Oh yeah, kids. Thanks for the inspiration.

  4. I purged a bunch of shit last weekend and today -- on to my closet. I love it. But I'm crazy that way :)

  5. Maggie May- Shit. Just throw it. Get over the guilt. Is it doing anything for the planet crapping up your house and life and soul? Hell no. Recycle and give to Goodwill or whatever if you can. Toss the rest.

    Elizabeth- It's shocking to me how much crap I have that I DID NOT BRING INTO THIS HOUSE! So why should I keep it?

    Mel- Even Goodwill- I shop there and see all the tons of crap that no one buys and so goes eventually back to the landfill.
    Let's skip a step. If it's crap.

  6. working now- checking in- i do Goodwill almost every month, helps-

  7. Mary, a couple years ago, after the big purge, when I threw away all my art supplies and stuff, I got into the habit of purging on a regular basis. I tend to collect paper like a magnet. I tend to throw it all away every couple of weeks. I give stuff away stuff I love stuff I cherish. I don't know why. I just keep books. It gets easier with practice. And also in a 600 ft. house.

  8. SJ- It feels so GOOD!

    Maggie May- I finish a room, get a glass of water, come back and check in. Two down, two and a hallway to go. By this rate, I'll be done around midnight. And I'm not even doing that great a job, either. Sigh.

    Radish King- I always say it's like a purse- the bigger the purse, the more shit you find you can't live without and you're toting around all this shit but if you have a small purse, you find you can make do with a hell of a lot less.
    My house is a HUGE purse! You should see Mr. Moon's den. Oh god. I won't even try to dust that shit. No way.

  9. Try the site. It helped me. If she could help me she should be able to help anyone. I have always been a lousy housewife untill I started shining my sink... For the first time in my life I was happy with the little steps I took... Little steps is the answer to us people who are attached down in memory lane...

  10. Thank goodness for this spot and all of these different people talking about stepping away from the computer (and the reminder of Flylady!)

    This little apartment is the size of a clutch purse but it somehow has a backpack's-worth of I-don't-know-whatall and my sink is not a bit shiny (because every dish we have is piled up in and around it).

    I'm going to have a glass of water and see what I can do about that.

  11. I am so the opposite. Really.

    I like clean, uncluttered, sparse.

    I am beyond emotional to the point of almost crippled, but not to stuff.

    I have regretted it sometimes, but for the most part...
    makes me crazy nervous and it has to go.

    weird, no?

    when my best friend died, she left behind an extreme amt of stuff. every piece of everything had a meaning and it left us with this weight of not knowing what to do with it.

  12. Photocat- I will check it out. I need help.

    x-ray iris- Have we all been struck with needing-to-purge at the same time? How odd!

    deb- Yes! Exactly! When you are left with someone's things after they die, it makes you realize how foolish it is to hang on to shit. It will be a weight for others. Not fair.

  13. it's always 5 o'clock somewhere.....i've been going through our spare room and found that burning seems to be the best way to rid myself of all the stinkin' paper i've saved from the old job over the last 7 years. at least we get a nice bonfire out of it.


  14. I've been cleaning today too. Taking a break with some ice water and time to read by blog friends post.

    Tossing? mmmmm...well, I can do it but those children momentos, toys, clothes are the hardest to let go of. So I box them and wait.

    I make new piles of stuff around the house and move them...and feel quite successful.

  15. I wholeheartedly agree, purging is good for the soul and I do it often and the shit still accumulates somehow! so vigilance is important. I applaud you Ms Moon.

  16. Yup, like Deb I am calmer in spare, uncluttered spaces, don't have knick-knacky sorts of things much, only random bits of furniture I didn't buy and stacks of books I did but don't have shelves for. And there has to be plenty of room for my daughter's wheelchair to move through---that and her giant therapy ball, which dominates the living room. But even without great amounts of stuff, untidiness prevails lately. Unsorted paperwork; I'm a messy cook; laundry accumulates so fast it must be done every day and the folding and putting away piles up; this is spider season and they're more constant and diligent than I; the compost bucket is always full; and somehow time seems oddly compressed so that there are no gaps between washing the dishes and the sink again filling with dishes to be washed. It's like a tape loop. When there was tape, that is. It turns into housework science fiction unless I remember to stay grateful. (Laundry means we have clothes to wear and water to wash 'em, pots to scour mean we have food to eat, dirty house means a place to live. So fortunate!)

    wv: gracr

    What is that, apprentice to grace?

  17. Mrs. A- And, as my son Hank says, "dark under the house." Bonfires- Oh. It's so hot. I can't even contemplate that. But yes! For you! Perfect!

    Ellen- Do you ever feel as if your house is the Museum of Our Children?

    Ms. Planting Woman- Nature does indeed abhor a vacuum. I personally abhor vacuum cleaners.

    A- Yes. I try to keep that gratefulness in my mind as well. Beautiful reminder of what is important. Thank-you, love.

  18. I am thinking that purging the house would bre good. We have way too much. All organized in boxes in closets. Maybe an eBay sale is in the future.

  19. Amen. To all of that. Amen!


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