Digging For Joy

So, I’ve been home for over three weeks. My zest for cleaning out my nest is unfaltering. Seems like an addiction. I can’t stop myself. Twenty-six years in one place will result in an accumulation of unmentionables, and I don’t mean those kind of unmentionables. More like: What was I thinking when I bought this. Quick! Into the trash before someone sees it!

Closets that I considered too small for anything are springing forth a surprising amount of things. It’s not quite the ubiquitous movie scene where a character opens a closet door and is immediately buried in stuff, but close. Where did I find the time? Not only to collect all this stuff, but to store it. So neatly even.

It’s like I’m peeking into someone else’s life. And in a way, I guess I am. That me barely exists anymore.

That me was busy, night and day, raising kids, holding down a job, running a full house. I didn’t have time to be sick. When RA came knocking, I ignored it, who knows for how long? I had no time, no room in my consciousness for me, for my goals, for my dreams.

So much has changed. And the trip down memory lane as I was cleaning out my younger daughter’s room was bittersweet. Six years after she moved out, I accept the fact that she has moved out. But I’m happy she “takes” me with her on her adventures around the world. I’m her editor, copyeditor and proofreader. She has to take me!

The room will now be strictly her dad’s office/bike room. The wall of shelving in her room yielded all kinds of memories, plus toys and books that I will donate. One thing those shelves held was a mother lode of Barbies. Twenty, if I counted correctly, all in their original boxes, untouched. I doubt she has any use for them now. I will ask, but I think I can safely assume that my granddaughters will end up sharing this booty.

I will give the dolls to them slowly, gradually, over several years so that I can stretch out the joy. I picked one out already for the four-year-old, who’s in her Disney Princess phase. I placed it in “her” room, waiting for her next visit.

Barbie doll

And what else have I found during my epic housecleaning? A bout of sciatica. Though it rarely bothers me, I developed it thirty years ago while having my older daughter. It landed me on bed rest at seven months into the pregnancy. The irony: she was my tiniest baby, five pounds seven ounces.

By contrast, my younger daughter weighed exactly the opposite, seven pounds, five ounces. And though I feared being left crippled by another pregnancy, having her was a breeze. I even got my first epidural, ever. Wow! What a difference a little needle makes.

So now I’m on a Medrol Pak, more steroids! And tomorrow I start some physical therapy. I’m not down or out, mind you. Just inconvenienced. After a two-day rest, my cleaning goes on at a slower pace. No more heavy lifting, and the hopping on and off the stepladder has been temporarily suspended.

What’s prompting the physical therapy is that in less than two weeks I will be sitting on a plane for five plus hours on my way to Los Angeles. Ouch!

 

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4 thoughts on “Digging For Joy

  1. Carla Kienast

    I love going through stored treasures and the memories they churn up. Just a note, though, Barbies are valuable, particularly those in the original boxes. I’d be sure and check with your daughter and or look on line. Some of those might be worth $$$$ — enough to buy those granddaughters new Barbies of their own and stash some in the bank. Sorry you overdid yourself. Knowing you, you’ll be up to your old tricks in no time (thank you prednisone and PT!). Hugs

    Reply
    1. Irma Post author

      We actually have the original Holiday Barbie in its original box. That might bring in a few dollars for the ole college fund, but it’s priceless seeing their little faces light up when they get a new toy. Grandma is a sucker for that!

      Reply
  2. J.G. Chayko

    Oh, it’s so strange to do a big clean-up and catch glimpses of your past…I love to dig through the memories of yesterday, and then revel in the purge, like moving on to a new phase of life…hoping that nasty sciatica will fade into the past very soon.

    Reply
    1. Irma Post author

      Thanks, J. It is better and will be now that I learned some stretching exercises to help it. What is most shocking sometimes is reading my old journals. I end up living vicariously through me!

      Reply

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