Saturday, August 18, 2012

Clearing the Clutter

This nightmare plays out in my mind something like a scene from CSI on television. First the camera pans the bedroom of the victim's home, showing you how she lived in disarray. Then, as the music builds with an ominous tone, the camera transports you into her connected bathroom and the investigator pulls back the shower curtain to reveal a grime build-up that is festering with clues about what happened to the victim.

This is when I wake up and shake off the late night TV horror and realize that the real nightmare is that my own home would send those same investigators into a frenzy. They'd have to call in reinforcements to assist with combing through the clutter and bagging up all of the possible evidence.

I insist on order in other areas of my life, but can't really wrap my head or heart around regimented simplicity at home. Don't get me wrong, I don't have fecal matter on the carpet, legions of cats roaming freely, or stacks of phone books in the hallway (although I do have several bags of 80s era VHS tapes in my office waiting for a recycling option that doesn't involve me dismantling them). I like to think of most of it as new age clutter.

There are cords for all manner of electronic devices at the ready. Some still plugged into an outlet, even though the device specifically reminded the user to unplug! Careless disregard for rules...obviously...but nothing as horrific as we see from a legitimate hoarder. Right?

It is impossible not to notice the plethora of artistic demonstrations of my son's creativity. They abound in a variety of stages of completion. Sometimes they are being broken down to re-purpose into yet another masterpiece. Much as I respect his creative process and his need to constantly have his hands involved in a project, I do wish that he'd either sell one of these gems at Sotheby's or learn to work in one area of the house (preferably just the basement or garage).

Alas, it's true that I want to pass off responsibility for controlling my clutter-prone behavior, but my CSI-inspired nightmare has proven that it's time to woman-up and grab my own Swiffer. Starting today, I hereby promise to change my mental channel and start living vicariously through Alice the Housekeeper (we know and love her from The Brady Bunch...if you aren't familiar with Alice you are way too young to be reading this blog!).

I can do this! I can conquer a life full of clutter!

Stay tuned for results....