Clearing out

For the last month or so, we have been helping clear out my mother-in-law’s home, as she is now happily playing bingo and enjoying being incredibly social and busy in an aged care facility. The house has been the family home for over 50 years. So, yeah, there was a fair bit of cleaning out to do.

It has inspired me to clear out some of my own stuff. There are cupboards where, to my shame, things were stashed when we moved in seven years ago and those things have not seen daylight since.

The other reason is I wanted to makeover the ‘spare’ room. This room, since being vacated by that boy of ours, has been a guest room that doubles as the ‘quick-throw-it-in-there-before-company-arrives-and-close-the-door!!’ room and triples as the hangout zone for the clothes that come off the line, need to be folded, don’t get folded, but get worn before they get a chance to be folded and the whole process repeats itself.

So, in order to reconfigure the spare room and turn it into my space, that will still double as a guest room but THAT’S IT (family, are you reading this?? No more junk, no more laundry. Got it?), I needed to clear it out a little. Okay, a lot.

So in order to clear it out, I needed to clear out another cupboard to put the stuff I wanted to keep from the spare room. Β And then I need to clear out the linen cupboard so I can fit the spare room bedlinen in, that was, up til now, on the bed that is now stored in a friends shed.

And let’s not forget the china I now have from my mother-in-law’s house. In order to fit that in, I need to clear out my buffet.

I feel like I’m on a revolving cycle of clearing out, storing, clearing out, storing. And my head is spinning with the effort.

And it’s made me think about how we can be a bit like that. We start to inwardly clear out a few areas of our character, our emotional baggage, our childhood, and we find it leads us from one issue to the next. And to fix one thing, we need to address the next thing in line and so on. And it can make us feel like we will never get anything sorted at all, just like I do with my house.

But you know what?

Today, I sit in my newly organised spare room with my little desk and laptop, the new futon delivered and in place, my recycled painting hanging on the wall.

And I know satisfaction.

Oh sure, there is still a doona and pillows on the dining room table, clothes ready for a charity disposal lining the hallway, and a box of bits and pieces I don’t know what to do with by the door. But this one room is done.

It’s worth going through the messy stage of dealing with our issues, shining light on character traits that need work, and sometimes looking backward in order to move forward.

It’s worth having our emotions and thoughts in a state of disarray in order to achieve the end result of issues understood and laid to rest; of knowing we have bettered ourselves in one area and are ready to move onto the next.

So while it seems disruptive, and feels uncomfortable or even painful, to unpack things about ourselves that we’ve kept hidden or simply just ignored, it is worth it.

What ‘rooms’ in you do you need to look at clearing out? Start with just one, and you’ll soon be enjoying the open, clear space that it brings.

And when you’re ready, you can move onto the next room, encouraged by the success of the first room, just like me and my spare room πŸ™‚

9 thoughts on “Clearing out

  1. Excellent post – great segue from the external to the internal!

    Internally – there is a lot that needs clearing, for me.

    And externally…it is hard to keep up. I’m still looking for the wafflemaker I put away when we moved here…six years ago.


    • Thanks Andrew πŸ™‚

      I’m finding that for me the two processes are going hand in hand, which means I get to ruminate on the internal, while sorting out the external.

      Good luck looking for that waffle maker. I’m still looking for a rather big painting in a frame that I put away when we re-painted the lounge room four years ago. Seriously, how can I misplace something of that size???


  2. Yes, the domino effect of clearing some ‘space’ in our home and in our head, to make room for a cleaner, roomier, better room. My guy and I downsized from a 5 bedroom to a 2 bedroom (from one coast to the other coast) and not only did we feel lighter, cleaner, happier, our world opened up to new possibilities beyond the new space.


  3. This blog spoke to me, big time! When I was younger, in my 20s, 30s, into my 40s, I was a packrat. I blame Mom and Ang – they saved everything (they even wiped off tin foil and used it again, they were raised in the Depression). So I saved everything – I might need it someday! Then I realized that the most important stuff – pictures of my Mom’s childhood, pictures of my childhood, pictures of my son’s childhood, my family’s genealogy charts – that’s all I needed. And a few hundred books that I managed to save. I got wiped out in a flood, and I realized (after a whole lotta tears), that the things I was crying over meant nothing. The couch, the pots and pans, the towels. The Junk! A space to call your own – no kids or hubs allowed! – is special. Keep it neat, girl! But save all the story idea notes.


  4. Pingback: Clearing out and the space it leaves | Personally Speaking

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