As I've mentioned in earlier posts, I cannot seem to control the flow of objects in my house. There are too many of them, and they all need to find a place to live, and it is too big a job for one person who spends time doing things other than putting things away.
Like this morning, for instance. It's the last day of winter break for the kids. We slept late. I am allowing them to wander and play and fight and get into mischief because I am trying to write and read for awhile this morning. Having been on vacation for ten days, there wasn't much of a chance for me to do those things. I am surveying the premises from my seat at the breakfast table and things don't look good: There are still empty boxes and wrapping paper on the living room floor from the last blast of present-opening two nights ago. The mail, about two weeks' worth, is lying in heaps on the kitchen island. Also there are stacks of books piled there, as well as the travel-related contents of my giant mama-purse, which I hastily dumped out before dashing off to jury duty yesterday morning.
There is so much Christmas Crap to clean up and dispose of. All the clothes from our trip are still wadded in our suitcase. I have no clean underwear. You know, the usual post-vacation duties lie in wait. Now that my husband is gainfully employed, I do all of this myself, and it reminds me what I didn't like about SAHM-hood and housewifery in the past years when I, like, lost my mind.
One of the ways I regained sanity was by retraining my mind to see the mess around me as a part of the scenery and not something I had to clean up. I had to stop trying to correct things. I noticed that my regular mental habit was to fix my eye on something - my house, a book I was reading, other people - and decide how it should be improved. I noticed this caused mostly anguish. It gave me a permanent worry line between my eyebrows.
I am grateful to report that this mind-state wasn't permanent after all. I'm not doing it, as a habit, these days. I think the meds help a lot, and so does my yoga practice. I remember to laugh at the absurd, unstoppable fecundity of daily existence in all its servings of peanut butter toast, orange peels, plastic toys from Wal-Mart, shopping bags, dog hair, water stains, sippy cups with gnaw-marks on the spout, discarded band aids, phone calls, beeping appliances, doctor appointments, new friendships, dentist appointments, dog walks, e-mail conversations, computers, newspapers, dying plants, flaking paint, birth control, scratched floors, medications, yoga classes, malfunctioning automobiles, and the other ten thousand things that make up my home life. I can't control it, and I can't put it all in order. I can push the breakfast dishes aside and clear a space on the table to write.
And I can remember, as my teacher likes to repeat (in a the chirpy Indian accent of the teacher from who she heard this): "Do your yoga and all is coming."