Do you remember the first time you moved into your very own apartment or home? Did it feel sparse? Did you feel like you needed to fill it up because it still looked empty? I think we all fall into that trap especially when we are young. A sparse home doesn’t usually give off the feeling that it is lived in. Surely, there has to be lots stuff in it to be a home.
I admit I fell into that trap when I was younger. Years of accumulation took their toll, and I said enough was enough. It’s not been easy, but it has been rewarding. There is so much yet to do. Baby steps.
This morning I awoke at 6am to the aggravating chirp of a smoke detector. My husband walked into our bedroom flustered. He searched for the offending chirper for a good 30 minutes prior to no avail. It was my turn to help.
I stood in our children’s bedrooms until I heard the chirp. It was definitely coming from the kitchen and living room area so I closed the kids’ doors. I stood in the kitchen and heard a chirp, but it was coming from an area with no smoke detector on the wall. I started wondering if my husband had installed one in the attic and forgot to tell me. I began to walk towards the sound when I heard a chirp behind me.
This is when I started to question my sanity.
My husband and I finally decided to tag team after walking circles around one another for ten minutes. Surely, this chirp was not moving, or was it? Did someone strap a dying smoke detector to the back of a small rodent? Eventually we figured out that there were two chirps. One of the offending smoke detectors was located and disarmed. The other chirp came from our kitchen island which is an odd place for a smoke detector. Finally, my husband bent down and emerged with a chirping battery operated carbon monoxide detector I had stashed there months prior.
Out of sight, out of mind.
This is the same thing that happens to us when we fill our homes with too much stuff. We become oblivious to what is around us to the point that the stuff actually becomes a permanent fixture. Your brain trains itself to ignore things that fresh eyes wonder how it’s possible for you to ignore the practically literal elephant in the room.
There is no way to even know what you have. You buy more of something only to find duplicate or triplicate things later. It piles up and up and up. Maybe one day you can’t take it anymore. You clean, you sort, you organize, only to find out that all you accomplished was to place a pretty bow on your stuff. There’s a saying that a turd with whipped cream on top is still a turd. (Or maybe I just made that up.) Nevertheless, your stuff is the turd.
No longer will out of sight, out of mind rule my home. This is war. It’s a fight I want to win over my space, my sanity, and my happiness. It’s a fight that we choose to wage every day or just give up. Today, I choose to fight and all because a little chirping box drove me to the brink.