My husband and will be visited Saturday by a social worker who will evaluate both us and our space to determine our suitability to adopt a child. Wow. Big life transition.
The decision to adopt has given us a chance to take a major inventory, both inside (our motivations, values, strengths and weaknesses) and outside (do we have room for another growing person in our apartment? What can be cleared away that we no longer need to make room for another person and a whole new identity as parents?) This inventory told us some changes in our space were in order.
To overhaul our apartment, I gave myself an action plan, a deadline, and I took myself on as a client – and having just been on the receiving end of this decluttering transformation, I reaffirm from knowing, what I tell my clients all the time — having some company for the task is SO rewarding!
When a friend put an offer out to come help me, all kinds of uncertainty popped up – what she would think of my “mess”? would she boss me around in my own home? Would she disrespect items I cherished and judge me for wanting to hold on to them? All the fears my clients have told me they’ve before having me over, were apparent for me.
I struggled with my ego, which told me I was a professional organizer, I shouldn’t need help. And I decided I didn’t NEED help, I WANTED it. I decided it would be an adventure to bring someone into a process that’s always been solitary, and frankly overwhelming and tedious. I decided I’d be vulnerable and let whatever I wanted to protect all hang out.
Bringing someone into my decluttering efforts brought clarity and a sounding board to my indecision. It brought friendship and joy and permission for letting go. It brought humor to what I can take way to seriously. Our stuff is just STUFF, for goodness sake, but my, how we get attached. Our things are not who we are, but we do let them hold aspects of ourselves – feelings, stories, beliefs, worries. Being able to share these feelings, beliefs, stories with someone before we toss an item into the trash or goodwill bag can reassure us that whatever the items represents is either still alive in us, or is ready to be gone. I found this so.
Life is dynamic. It’s a lot easier to move through it when when we’re not weighed down by stagnant stuff. The result of my overhaul? My apartment is buzzing with the energy of usefulness and vibrancy. There’s a clear path and I feel abundantly full and alive. I feel like I’ve been to the spa, been exfoliated, lost 10 pounds, had my neighborhood streets repaved and won the lottery all at once. What a great way to prepare to greet a baby into it’s new space.
What new adventures are you pregnant with? What preparation do you need to birth what’s next for you? How can you share the joy and lighten the job by bringing in some help?