On the verge of 2012 I was to be found in closets, kitchen drawers, other types of drawers, close to the floor (mopping), relocating items we do not use, but want to keep, organizing our digital library, filtering toddler clothing and getting rid of things that do suck the life out of one healthy human being.
WHAT??!! This is not me. I don’t like to clean. I do love a glimmering kitchen sink, but on a daily basis we only mirror ourselves in the sink late in the evening or even the next morning. Organizing all sorts of stuff is not part of my normal behaviour. However I couldn’t stop uncluttering. I did it before breakfast. While having breakfast I thought of the things to unclutter. After breakfast I thought of strategic plans to continue uncluttering and meanwhile taking care of our toddler girl (almost 1.5 years) It was as if I was breathing the word ‘uncluttering’ all the time. Noooo, even worse, I was living the word ‘uncluttering’.How did it all came to this?
As you might know, my partner Arnold is having a rough time (burn-out/constant headache). This absolutely had a great effect on our household. Not only on our household: it took mine and his emotional development on a high speed train through Japan. Yeeeeeaaaaaahh, that’s us in the train while everything else proceeded. Not good. Not good at all. So one afternoon, halfway through November, I stopped the train; while flipping through the pages of a magazine an idea came to me. Arnold should go on a retreat. Over Christmas and New Year’s eve since these typically social events were undoubtedly too much for him to handle. I will take care of Amé and he should go wherever he wanted to go to.
The idea was received by a man who was already looking forward to spend Christmas holidays recharging by doing close to nothing. He was happy to say the least. The idea of being able to spend time by himself gave him the wings he needed to endure headache and obligations for five more weeks.
And now it all comes down to me again. Five days before he would leave some unfamiliar frustrating emotions got a hold of me. After a couple of days it became clear that these were in fact not quit unfamiliar; these were the ones I have been consciously working on since the death of my father (four years ago). Anger, fear and sadness. How come I didn’t see it coming? Or even recognized it from the beginning? Answer is simple: I was too busy keeping my head above water.
So my vision of having an enjoyable, quiet and happy time with family, reading and writing was painfully disturbed by an all-in unsafe feeling. A feeling of which I KNOW it needs to see the light of day some time. And the time was NOW. My father left his wife and two little daughters. Through the eyes of my child and our circumstances I get to know my inner child; the child who was left hurt.
These deep hidden emotions were unleashed by frightening thoughts of Arnold not coming back home. Based on reason I knew he would be safe and come back. I knew I would be safe and ok with the situation; being alone and taking care of our daughter. Only the combination of going through these awful emotions and carrying the responsibility of Amé was bizar. Besides lots of crying the unclutterer was born. Uncluttering provided me a feeling of safety and being in control. Nonetheless, if it wasn’t for my dear friends and unexpected new friends I would be lost anyhow: uncluttering sure can’t make up for a good shoulder to cry on.
After two weeks of uncluttering and getting to know my long hidden emotions I fully support the concept of leading an uncluttered life; on a material, fysical, emotional and spiritual level!