Friday, August 05, 2011

Sacred and Simple: The Bedroom and Wardrobe

I’ll be honest, I’m pretty good about keeping a fairly clean bedroom. This is not an area of struggle for me when it comes to neatness.

I’d like to be able to pat myself on the back for that, but the truth is I married someone who absolutely cannot stand to see clothes lying on the floor. It is a rare day when I find one of Brian’s shirts lying on the bed or tossed on the cedar chest. If (and that’s a BIG IF) I do, he usually apologizes profusely, explains he thought it was mine, and then immediately takes care of it. I suppose I should be offended by his assumption there, but since I’m being honest (whose dumb idea was that anyway?) I’ll just go ahead and admit that a shirt on the floor does not bother me and I am the most likely to leave clothes lying here and there.

Still, even though it was clean, it was still too much.

There are few things I find more fun than going through a closet, culling the items, and then reorganizing the contents. I’ve always thought I was pretty good at it. But this last time I went through I was more ruthless than I have ever been. And I found a lot of this:

- stuff I have been saving for when I am skinnier or chunkier (oh let’s hope not)
- stuff I paid too much money for to just not wear
- stuff I don’t like on me but looks amazing on a hanger
- stuff I like, but am not comfortable wearing (things that reveal too much of the real me, if you get my drift)
- stuff I used to wear to my office job

Translation: stuff I should no longer have in my possession. I cleaned out 3 full boxes full of clothes and I feel pretty good about it. My plan is to hang onto them for a garage sale at a later date, and that little pause in getting these things out the door was calming to me. I didn’t panic about putting something in an outbox, because I knew I had a few days to rethink my choices.

(Look at all those empty hangers!)

In fact, it worked in a way I did not expect. It was inspiring to see all those boxes full of stuff I was letting go. I have spent several more days just sorting through more drawers and being even more honest about the pieces I was holding onto. More things have made their way into the garage sale boxes the longer they sit there!

Now, the one area of struggle is my nighttable. I have a few books waiting to go on some shelves I have been day dreaming about for years for my basement. I’m just not the type of person who will be able to sell or get rid of a book. If I would hoard any one thing, it would be books. And I don’t even feel guilty about it because I do actually re-read books. The ones that live near my bed and the ones I read and read again and read again. And yes, that is the Twilight series and I have read each of those books no less than 10 times.

I also put away several votives and candles, trying not to keep something if I didn’t think I would end up actually using it. Candles in the bedroom is a really nice, romantic idea. I can tell you on NO hands how many times we have actually lit a candle in our bedroom. The candles can go.

Since the bedroom was fairly uncluttered already, my wardrobe was really the only thing that incurred any “losses”. But those losses were my gain. I have a lot more closet space, which I do not really truly plan to fill. Now when I open the closet or drawer I am not faced with several articles of clothing that I really should wear but guiltily skip over in favor of something else. The things hanging in my closet or lying in my drawers are things I really do love and wear often (aside from the wedding veil which is handmade by my mother-in-law and I will never willingly part with). Our room is restful and peaceful, unencumbered by the clutter that so frequently happens in other areas of our home. And that ability to just rest, to have a quiet getaway and a place just for us, has made our bedroom a sacred place. No tv. No toys. No piles of papers. Just us without those other distractions. It's quiet, calm and peaceful - the way I like it.

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