Memories, not Clutter

Sometimes when things happen during the journey of our lives we need to take a step back and look at what really is important.

This was one of those times for me. I hope my words can help inspire you to look around at your home and life and see what is important and what is clutter.

Decluttering Tip Newsletter – Memories

Volume 2, Issue 12
March 24, 2009

Yesterday I sat down to write this newsletter and no ideas came to mind. What tip could I write that would help you? Because of the way I was feeling I wanted something meaningful.

The reason I felt down was because an elderly gentleman I knew passed away over the weekend. I remember when I first met Hank and his wife Doris last September. He had come into the chemotherapy room and sat down in the chair next to mine. He was scared and clueless as to what to expect. Since I was on my third treatment I felt like an expert and answered many of his questions.

Three weeks later when I came into the room for my next treatment Hank and Doris were already there. They waved me over to come sit in the seat next to Hank. His chemotherapy took six hours while mine only took four. While you are sitting in a room lined with recliners, IV poles, a nurses’ desk, and no TV for four hours it is easy to get to know the person next to you.

I love to bake but don’t need the calories so I baked the day before treatments and took the cookies into the doctor’s office. I always saved a few for my snack and some for Hank and Doris. He particularly liked a chocolate chip oatmeal cookie I made. I gave his daughter the recipe so she could make some for him.

Now, you may ask “what does this have to do with decluttering”? Actually, a lot. We get so caught up in our “things” that sometimes we put more importance on them than we do on our relationships with people. We surround ourselves with more and more things in the hope they bring us happiness and fill the emptiness around us.

But can those “things” smile back at you when you offer them a special treat? Can they be music to your ears like a room full of laughter can? Can those “things” fill your heart with compassion so you can reach out and help lift the spirit of someone in need, thus lifting your own spirit?

Sometimes we surround ourselves with clutter to keep from having those human connections. It is painful to lose someone we love. It is painful to lose someone we just got to know and would have loved to have had the chance to know better. But a brief encounter can touch us deeply and leave us better for it.

Every time I bake those simple chocolate chip cookies I will remember Hank’s smile. We helped each other get through the tough times of sitting in that uncluttered room while chemicals designed to treat cancer (Hank’s) or prevent future cancer (mine) dripped into our veins.

So instead of filling your home or life with clutter try to decorate your rooms with the smiling faces of family and friends. Allow their laughter and yours to fill your home with music. Let their love and friendship keep you warm and fill the empty spaces in your heart.

To a lighter load along the way.

Janice Scissors