Clutter, Forgetting Pants, and Other Reasons to Hang Curtains

She’s offering a discount for her 10 day declutter course and my finger is twitching. 

$39.89 and I too, can label make and preserve their puzzles. 

She looks happy. 

I also want to be happy with my books coordinated in a rainbow hue, betwixt battling West Elm bookends. 

You just know she smells like Juniper. Naturally. 

I’m more of a TJ Maxx, Eucalyptus candle with a dint on the lid, priced low, kind of girl. Working for that aroma.

She has answers. 

I am missing doll shoes. 

It’s probably too late to benefit from her wisdom and/or discount, I think and reach for my coffee. It’s wandered from my hand, again. My mind is too full to remember the exact details of its abandonment.

I wish it well. 

woman holding egg nog surveys the clutter in her house

My house and mind are exhausted with the excess of holidays and panic, both of which showcase their finer parts through the dining room windows. Which are still bare, no curtains. I wasn’t ready to learn a new skill, moving day, three years ago. But I have high hopes for the future.

Sometimes, I forget to wear pants. It’s probably been brought up on NextDoor. Dolores has her concerns. HOA’s just pissed.

Is there a Tiktok that helps with this? I feel like I would pay attention more if there was. Hanging Curtains for Sad Moms, crafted by a teen dancing to Encanto on repeat—chills, ya’ll.

Or maybe I need to keep the windows naked. Enough stares and I might consider moving the boxes around, clean a baseboard. Give it hope. 

At least find my Tired as a Mother filled mug. Who knows how much mold it’s gathered. I would ask Google but I can’t find her, either. 

room with clutter and half hung curtains

The clutter didn’t just show up one day and fall asleep after dinner. It’s been a gradual build up and excuse. I have unopened Christmas boxes from the attic that I just purposely overlooked 23 days in row. 

I don’t know how many Target pastel reindeer molds one must own, but I’ve exceeded it by twelve. They can find their own way back to the attic. 

This past month, we have survived Covid and quarantine and lots of togetherness and Bluey (I’m not knocking the sacred show, just noting it’s abundance). Upon being blessed and released, we decided to leave (read: escape) the clutter, and go find Christmas throughout Texas (quarantine does things to a traveler—we book trips in a frenzy and run out into the snow). We also live a state away from our family so figuring out how to celebrate Christmas with all its magic and still find a way back to our hometown to hug necks and throw gifts in the air, takes some planning and sacrifice. 

Doesn’t really leave room for meditation and sweeping. Both, excellent (I’ve heard) for breaking through messes. 

We returned home on New Year’s Eve. The chaos, right where we had left it. 

I was really hoping the next day would deliver that nifty New Year spell that whispers all the right things and pops your booty a little when you attempt to scroll the socials. 

No such magic befell me. I feel Marie Kondo is to blame.

hand holding sparkler

It has become pretty obvious, even though I fight it, that the clutter I’m wading through is directly influenced by the clutter I’m carrying around in my head: upcoming plans, missed opportunities, worries, book ideas, check on Lindsey, I’m going to eventually need a gym routine, we can probably add another extracurricular activity, but am I loving me, what show are they talking about, was that a cough, another birthday party, don’t suck at Class Mom, check on Tyler, you should have that looked at, are they fulfilled, cook like her, I would love to help, have I helped enough, groceries…

I’m trying to organize my thoughts while I clear out the fridge. Both needed to let go of some things, months ago. And yet, regrets and spinach cling. 

This year, I’m not choosing a word to define it. Too much responsibility. 2022, pick out your own dress. 

Admitting that is hard for me. I am the type of of human that loves to make mighty proclamations and never follow through. Or follow through for like, a quarter of the experience, and then spot something shiny in the corner and forget all about the cookies in my hand.  

Not great for a struggling writer. Not great for the anxious mother, with $39.89 to spare and commitment issues. 

mother and two kids hold drinks under sign that says Weingarten

So what am I bringing into the new year besides clutter? If not a word or a resolution—is there anything else worth sharing to hold myself somewhat accountable? 

And where is the sudden urge to begin something new? Or revisit the gym? Paint a room? Did is also get lost in the mess, sandwiched between the extra reindeer molds? 

This year, I will not force it. I don’t really have the strength to pretend. Or the bandwidth to wallow. 

I’m going to move slowly. But I am going to move.

Likely, at a different pace than most people. It’s good to remember I’m not required to enter the race. Even if this year’s trophy and accolades beckon me forward. 

God, I love a good brag. Missing that. 

Maybe I just need to embrace the mess for awhile. Realize that January isn’t my reset and that no one really gives a flying poo if I can repurpose bins or donate them. 

Maybe I don’t need a course, another thing to commit to. Maybe I just need to clear one drawer, write one chapter, reach out to one friend. 

Tiny triumphs. 

And when some of the clutter has been cleared, no matter how long it takes, I’ll feel that old spark of beginning something again.  

But I would also just settle for the clarity to finally hang up curtains. 

child works on school assignment while other child peers at him through the window


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