I’ve spent years rebuffing an upbringing of “A place for everything, everything in its place.” Growing up in a perfectly perfect house made sure, as an grown-up, that I never ever wanted towels that all matched each other in a perfectly aligned set. (Towels around here come from the thrift shop because they’ve been washed 100 times and actually absorb water.)
I talk about de-cluttering all the time and actively seek the calm it brings, but my resistance to that “perfect” look meant the kitchen part of my home got ignored. Over the years of neglect, a 3-day clean-up plan emerged. My husband clears and rinses the dishes after dinner and this tidy assemblage began to sit longer and longer on the counter, ready for serious loading and washing… later. Much later. Eventually, my husband Bill started complaining about sanitation and such. What? This mild-mannered-anything-goes guy complained? This was big. (By the way, this young maiden is not me. ha. I do, however, wear purple rubber gloves in an attempt to lighten the load mood.)
Just like other accumulated possessions in your home, eyes adjust to seeing them every day until they became more like fixtures than something to get rid of. You just get used to seeing that little table in the corner and don’t realize it never really gets used for anything other than the TV remote.
The opposite is true in most homes. Kitchens are usually spotless while the rest of the house is filled to the brim with stuff families don’t even notice anymore. Trying to sell our home has me doing a 180°. We were instructed to empty it out a bit, and the clearer space is divine. Why didn’t we do this sooner? It has to be picked up constantly for potential viewing, but the pain of knuckling under is subsiding. For the first time I’ve come to appreciate walking into a clean kitchen in the morning. This alone feels like starting the day with a clean slate, so just imagine what it feels like to de-clutter your whole house. Ahhh. Maybe my rebellion is over… finally.