Well, this is embarrassing.
I am a hoarder. In my room, you will see lots of pieces of paper that have absolutely no meaning that are on every surface.
But, Whitney! You might need that tag from your new Nike shorts. Or that receipt from the grocery store. Especially if you’re audited. Because you’ll probably be audited.
I cleaned my room a few weeks ago. I piled up all the random pieces of paper, scraps of trash, empty prescription bottles (but what if you need them as EVIDENCE for something?), and empty boxes from packages I ordered ages ago. I don’t know why I keep all of this nonsense, but I get really antsy every time I have to throw something away.
What if I need that syllabus from a class that I’m not taking anymore? What if someone asks me about it? What if that is what’s keeping me from getting published? What if it’s secretly a message from Agents of SHIELD and they want me to join them? What if it’s secretly a portal to Middle Earth? WHAT IF?!
So I stopped listening to that voice, and I threw out pretty much everything. And since then, I’ve been doing it consistently. I’m learning to get out of my brain, to stop creating worries when there isn’t anything to worry about, and to live a cleaner life.
With that has come a few new realizations about spring cleaning:
1. Dog hair is disgusting, and also, I should probably vacuum more often. That, or turn Atreyu’s extra hair into a beautiful mohair sweater or a shag rug or a brindle scarf or a hairy lampshade or something. He just keeps shedding, which makes me worry that maybe he is sick or maybe he hates me AND THEN I HAD A DREAM THAT HE WAS SHEDDING SO MUCH HIS SKIN AND TAIL FELL OFF. See what I mean about creating worries when there isn’t anything to worry about?
2. I’m way, way too dependent on technology. The past few months, I’ve been learning to put my phone away, and put my computer down. I’ve learned that I’ve really lost the ability to communicate with people verbally because, you know, I’m good at words and stuff like that. So I’ve been effectively cutting back on technology since January in order to relearn how to use a phone as a phone. So far, it’s only kind of working, but that’s because I have the NYT crossword puzzle app on my phone, and damn, that’s fun.
3. Relationships are like plants, or something. Along with my technology issues, I have learned that I’m not very good at being involved in the lives of my friends if they are not in my immediate area. I’ve been worried about that a lot lately–they think you’re awful, your friends hate you, you’re a terrible friend, why don’t you call more? Why haven’t you gone to see them? Why are you so distant?–but I’ve been also trying to show that just because I’m not actively involved with people who live far away doesn’t mean I don’t care. I’ve been shooting out texts (irony!) telling people that I miss them, love them, and care about them. I’m embracing the fact that I’m much more likely to want to grab dinner with someone in town and catch up for hours over sweet potato fries than I am on the phone more frequently or even over Skype. It’s my preferred method of keeping touch, because it’s the least stressful, and most rewarding. So sorry internet friends, and real life friends, and college friends, and old work friends, and everyone else: I LOVE YOU, but, like, can we talk when we’re in the same town? Just because I’m not reaching out doesn’t mean you aren’t in my brain, it just means that I hate talking on the phone.
4. Sometimes it’s really, really good to get rid of old writing. And other times it’s hilarious. A few weeks ago, we did a reading from our old journals. Which got me thinking about all of my old writing, which made me think of you readers, and made me want to embarrass myself and give you something to entertain yourself.
So, as part of my spring cleaning, and being more open and honest, and also laughing at myself, please find your way to My teenage DeviantArt account, where you can laugh until you cry at all my old writing.
I’m sorry I’ve been so distant, blogosphere. Let’s take this relationship to the next level as I get prepared to drive cross-country once more.