where there is order


it is difficult to write in the middle of chaos.

yesterday, i put my new ikea drawers together, but i haven't yet put things away. i also still need to hang the shelves. that will be today's work. i am going at my own pace, this is not a race. this is my life. i have a plan. i follow through. i am not the person i used to be, to start a project like this and then stop in the middle when it got too hard.

and yet, it is difficult to think in the middle of chaos. the disorder pulls at me. it needs tending. it needs soothing.

this is how far i have come from my earlier self, when chaos was the norm. now i notice. now i see what is happening, in the moment. my teenage self would be shocked (and awed - she didn't want to be a complete mess, she just didn't understand the how of how to keep it all together, the how needed to be taught to her).

it has been a life long journey, to change myself from someone who never put anything away. never did the dishes unless forced. never noticed mold growing in teacups. it has taken a lot of practice. a lot of relapses, too, but that's the point of practice: to go back. to keep going back. over and over.

i've talked about this before, but it is such a huge life change that it bears repeating. i went from slob (and burgeoning hoarder) to mostly neat.

yes, i still need reminders. routines, lest i fall back to not noticing the dishes in the sink. i still ignore floors and dust, maybe more than other naturally neat people. perhaps i still leave clothes by the side of the bed for a few days. but this practice doesn't mean beating myself up for what i do or do not do. it means noticing. going back to the practice of putting things away, keeping things clean.

and once in awhile, i have to tabula rasa a room (or the entire house) to get back to a clean slate, to start practicing over.

it may be difficult to write in the midst of chaos - and this chaos i am in the midst of is nothing compared to the chaos of my past - but it is not impossible.

it is not impossible because i have so very much practice at coming here and writing.

and so i come here and write, first.

this is my life, after all.