Wednesday, December 15, 2004

The Chaotic Spotless Gypsy Dance

Today on Oprah, Martha Beck talked about what our houses reveal about ourselves. There was a time when I would have chalked up her talk to New Age weirdo thinking but not today. She said a person should take the room in their house they wouldn't show to anyone and pick three words to describe it. She said these words will identify things we are not facing in our inner selves. Whoa.

I thought about how I've spent a lifetime finding some kind of balance in my surroundings. On any given day a person could either walk into a total slob enviroment or a perfectly spotless enviroment that was my house. I had such a hard time learning that it was okay to have something in between. You can be sure that the perfectly spotless enviroment was a sign that I felt like my life was out of control and I was doing my damndest to control it whichever way I could.

In this past year when managing a home has become something I have had to relinquish control over (due to health issues) I have had to face a whole new reality. I know I can't handle chaos. If my house is in chaos you can be sure my head is as well. Just give me some order and I will function much better. No longer do I want spotless surroundings. Except for those days when I have an incessant need to find an old toothbrush and scour the baseboards with it. Those days are signs that either I am hormonal to the hilt or every other coping method I had in my arsenal hasn't worked to make me feel secure.

I have so many thoughts about this I don't know where to begin.

I used to be a pastel person. I bought clothes that were pastel coloured. I bought stuff for my house that was pastel coloured. I even wore pastel makeup! Somewhere inside of me was this idea that pastel was safe. Soft pastel colours equalled soft spoken people and I desperately wanted to be known as one of those. If flowers came in pastel colours I would have had a whole symmetrical garden of them!

Then one day I walked into this funky little store filled with unique lamps and knick knacks. And I was drawn as if by a magnet to this lamp that had a brightly coloured mini dresser as a base. I am talking about a base that measured about 10"H x 6"L x 4"W. And every little drawer was a different colour. What came to my mind was that it was a gypsy dresser. And I wanted it. I didn't give myself the freedom to by it. I regret that. And I have to tell you it startled me to be attracted to something that wasn't pastel. If I believed in re incarnation I would have been sure that day that I had been a gypsy in a previous life.

But I did learn from that experience that perhaps my outsides and insides were not matching up. That maybe I truly wasn't a pastel person. And that maybe that was ok.

I have a dream of owning a writer's cabin one day. I have promised myself that nothing will go into that cabin that does not resonate within me. It will be a gypsy cabin of sorts. It is so hard to get to know myself well enough - to get quiet enough to only hear my voice - about what I really like in this life and what I don't. But I am willing to learn.

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