At first, the attitude was aggressive.  Nonstop, fast-paced, hard-driving, get it done.  But it slowed after the third day.  The urgency receded, replaced by the recognition that it can’t all be done at once.  Some things take time.  Rushing can only lead to mistakes, mistakes to regrets, regrets to annoyance, annoyance to anger, anger to…nothing.  So the new pace is slow.

The kitchen won’t be organized to my liking for days, maybe weeks.  We’ll live out of boxes for weeks, maybe months.  The furniture won’t be exactly like we want it until we try it out in different places, different orientations.

I’ll live with clutter for awhile.  I don’t like clutter.  I despise clutter.  No, I loathe clutter. Clutter makes me uncomfortable.  But I’ll live with discomfort for awhile, because living with it in the short-term will, ultimately, shorten the time I’ll have to live with it in the long-term.

Moving into a new house is an opportunity to see and touch and wonder about possessions that have long since been forgotten.  It presents an opportunity to get rid of “stuff” that no longer belongs in one’s life.  But that opportunity can’t be rushed; you can’t just throw out perfectly good “stuff” that might be perfect for someone else, but no longer for you.  So you have to take it slow, assessing and reassessing all those long-forgotten things for which you cannot find storage places…how can you get rid of them, who wants them, why did they ever enter the house?

By the end of the summer, everything will be organized, everything will be put away.  The clutter will be gone, replaced with order and serenity.  Maybe the end of next fall.  By this time next year, for sure.  Slow.  Ever so slow.

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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