Imposing Order

Saturday was an epic day of organizing the objects around me. I really wanted to be able to say that on Saturday I organized my life, but that hasn’t happened. And I’m not sure I can impose order on life, anyway. What I did on Saturday sounds absurd, but is really a totally predictable response to chaos for someone like me.  I like routine and patterns and not having a place to be in the morning is hard. I’m out of work, and while I think I just landed a part time job and have increased my time volunteering, on occasion I feel totally and completely unraveled.

I started with the kitchen cabinets that the pots and pans and baking things live in. I hadn’t done anything to them since moving in well over two years ago. I took everything out, scrubbed the cabinets inside and out and put in new shelf paper. Then came the best part.  Everything went back in, plus a few new pots and pans (thanks to my Dad). I like the challenge of making everything fit inside a set space. After that, I felt pretty accomplished and sat down and read for a while. (By the way, if you’re a fan of mystery novels set in a different historical era, you must read the ‘Maise Dobbs’ series by Jacqueline Winspear. Just listen to me and read them.) But then my best friend came by for dinner and we ended up rearranging furniture, too. We rearranged the bedroom and my office, and at the end of the night, after a long day of moving things around, I felt settled.

My next project is the office closet, but I’m trying to pace myself. I’ll keep volunteering, reading, cooking, solving crossword puzzles and applying for jobs. And here and there, when I start to feel frazzled, I’ll organize and clean and impose order where I can. We’ve all got our coping mechanisms. Mine means I’ll have a fabulously organized apartment by the time I go back to work. And I’m really okay with that.

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