Trending

I have been noticing and reading about hygge.  It is trending in my web orbit on various sites.  As I read about it, I am not finding anything new to me.  The Danes are crediting with creating a way to survive the long, cold winters by doing certain things.

Here in Southeast Texas, long cold winters don’t happen.  However, we do have days strung together of damp, grey rain.  This morning is one.  Yesterday was one.

As long as I can remember, I have set myself to enjoy such days.  I have the curtain drawn back and the window open to hear the rain.  The lights are low.  A candle flickers.  My pillows are propping me up as I snuggle under my coverlets.  A cup of tea is steaming on the nightstand.  I have my journal at hand to scribble my thoughts.

I have spent time this morning thinking and planning.  Pondering where I want to go with the projects I am working through this month.  As an update, over the past week, I have hauled off some odds and ends to the charity shop.  I have added things to the costume box for our daughter’s theater.  I have dumped some projects.  I will be continuing to haul off the junk associated with those projects.

Additionally, I have determined to dump the mindset that tells me I must have everything on our place clean and orderly before I can actually feel happy, content or satisfied.  Several years ago, in an effort to fight off this very mindset, I wrote an exhaustive list of all the things necessary to achieve such a situation.  I actually included: no fire ants anywhere on the place.  We live on seven acres in Southeast Texas.  I included no fire ants.  Of course, it was one of those extreme exercises designed to show me how ridiculous are my thought processes.  In the quiet of this morning, I recalled that and laughed all over again.

What does that have to do with now?  I have some items on that very list that are not so ridiculous still holding sway over me.  I am determined to rewrite the tape that plays in my head.  “If this, then that” goes round and round.  If I could get this done, I could have that.  But, I am like the mule at the millstone going round in circles chasing the carrot that dangles on the line out in front of me.

Already I have significantly reduced the incoming flow of stuff.  I have unloaded things.  I am focusing on the things I really want to pursue.  Not pursuing them, yet. I am thinking about those things rather than the carrot dangling out there.

I am allowing myself to truly enjoy the art of doing nothing.  I am giving myself permission to be happy with being imperfect.  I am granting myself leave to embrace my oddities.  I was once described by a friend as one who marches to the beat of her own drummer.  I have tried so hard to seem normal.  To be less strange.  To not distance people with my weirdness.  I am giving myself permission to let it all go and see what stays.  See who stays.

This is a good trend to follow.  “To thine own self be true.”  What year did W.S. write that?  After 400 years, it is still a good trend to follow.

candle

Traveling light.

“I travel light.” That is a line spoken by John Wayne in the film In Harm’s Way.

It is an idea I adopted a long time ago. Just an idea. I have not applied it across the board in my life. Yet, I want to travel light in all areas.

When it comes to going on a plane trip or to the river bank, I generally take bare basics and one or two frills. My purse could be, and sometimes is, very tiny.

I pack a small bag to go away usually. One exception is a trip he and I take to a cattle sale.  I tend to pack a lot of clothes because there is no time to wash and sometimes a need for two or three outfits a day.  An auction barn can be a pretty grubby place.

There are some additional areas in which I would like to reduce my baggage. I have a book bag.  It contains a zipper bag of pens, sticky notes, markers, paper clips, etc.  I stuff my bag with a journal, a tablet, another book or two, an envelope of odd papers and bills.  Even when I know good and well I won’t have time to even look at this stuff, I feel lost without having it along to some places.  As if something will happen and I won’t have the things I need to keep my head straight.  I want to feel more confidence in my memory.

Another item is morning coffee. I always take a cup in the car on the way.  I’ve already had a pot before I leave.  I usually only drink a sip or two on the ride.  Then, I have a travel cup of cold coffee to haul out of the car.  Extra baggage from habit.

My clothes closet truly is extra baggage. Clothes I don’t wear for a myriad of reasons. I have read about the 333 project.  Thirty three articles of clothing for three months.  Interesting reading.  Not going to happen with me.  At least not yet.  I have read about French women’s style.  Allegedly, they have a few white shirts and dark pants and a pair or two of shoes to achieve their legendary style.  More interesting reading.  I can’t pay attention long enough to put that kind of closet together.

When I look around my home and life, I don’t have as much as many Americans. I have tons more than most of world’s households.   As I get my mind ready for a plane trip, I will need to pick out what will go in a small backpack and a medium size purse.  Five nights, four days.

I want to travel light. Moments like this make me think about the baggage I carry.  What about the baggage in my heart?  Thankfully, the load seems lighter each year.  Learning to let go of the things that need to go. Learning to let be the things that need to be.  Letting it go and letting it hurt.  Letting loose and letting love flow through.

As I look back over this raveled thread of thoughts, one common thing emerges. Baggage comes in many forms.  A coffee cup, a heavy suitcase, cluttered closets, a burdened heart.  My theory is that all these areas overlap as layers.  When the layers are peeled back, truth is revealed.  What is the truth of my life?

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Diversion

I have a simple diversion tactic. Keep pushing stuff around in the house.  Makes me feel like I have done something.  All I have done is move junk from one place to another.  Purpose?  Diversion.  For twenty years, I have done this.  If I am pretending like I am getting organized and getting rid of clutter, I don’t have to think about other things.  Things like how much I miss my children.  How much I miss my parents and my grandparents. How much I miss other relatives either gone from this world or living too far distant.  How little I seem to have to do other than go to my 9 to 5 and do a little housework.  Yes.  I need to read last week’s post. But……….

I am at a loss as to what to do with myself right now. My mind rushes along, but my body can’t keep up.  My thought processes are not focused.  I have found myself working through another cycle of grief.  It is different from cycles in the past.  It is more than true about each person having to grieve in their own way and time.  I never expected to deal with this so many years later.  I am just sad about all of it all over again.  Yes. There have been some private issues surfacing that may have triggered this.  First one thing then another.  Then, something else.

But, you know what? I can get through this.  I will feel better soon.  He will help me.  I am letting go of some material things and some irrelevant ideas.  I am letting go of things that are holding me back.  What am I being held back from?  My cousin knows.  She told me what I should do.  I am about ready to get started.

Meanwhile, a certain little girl and her baby sister occupy my happy thoughts and bring me great hope. I found the thing to make her giggle.  My Hallowe’en decoration:

cat and fish 1

The fish don’t seem to mind!  The cat looks surprised!