The Relief of Super-Purging

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The day after Christmas, I had an eyelash so wedged up in my eyelid that no amount of poking, washing, blinking, stomping, swearing, or kicking my husband did the trick in removing it.

2 hours later I told the eye doctor I loved her. She had plucked it out with tweezers after bending my lid inside out. We shared a look at the tiny lash and marveled at its size and how set it had been in staying in my eyeball. The amount of relief I felt at that moment was like nothing I had ever experienced. The crazy adrenaline rush of happiness was, I imagine, tantamount to what one must feel when one reaches the peak of Everest.

After I told Christian 4 different times how relieved I was, I realized I had been experiencing a milder version of that feeling with every throw-out session I held at home lately, which were many. I’m on a tear- partly because I’m trying to practice being more mindful- of my thoughts, my actions, and my possessions.

Holy Hell. When you open your eyes to all the shit you have, overwhelm floods in immediately. This is accompanied by guilt, a bit of disgust, and a dash of anxiety.

When you open your eyes to all the shit you have, overwhelm floods in immediately. This is accompanied by guilt, a bit of disgust, and a dash of anxiety.

I’m on a mission to majorly simplify our home- not just for the hopefully impending move, but for our mental well-being. The relief and happiness I feel with each giant garbage bag taken to the trash or Goodwill adds up to the same rush of relief I felt at the stowaway eyelash. I didn’t want it there, I resented it, I battled it.

Have you read the book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up? I’m putting some of these principals to work as I take a good look at each item I come across and see if I can bid it a compassionate goodbye.

The other impetus for such a drastic purging is the need to shed the physical reminders that tie us to the past. Jim Bunch, in his interview with Srini Rao, spoke of the massive importance of designing our environments to positively affect our lives. He talked about the power of objects to trigger strong emotions based on what we associate with them, and boy oh boy oh boy, when I glanced around my room I was flooded with emotions and memories from most of the furniture and objects I looked at.

Many filled me warm, fuzzy feelings of love for my family- especially Christian. But just as many left me cold or just plain puzzled. Why was I still lugging around the random nasty plastic drawers I bought 8 years ago that were barely holding anything?

I’ve always loved a fresh start, and I’m pushing for a big beautiful one this year. I’m aiming to look around and love everything I see- even if we have to live in a half-empty house for a while. In fact, I love the idea of living in a half-empty house, running around and twirling like a maniac at all the emptiness.

Then, slowly, piece by piece, we can rebuild. Mindfully acquire- only letting in items we absolutely need or love. I can’t wait for that brand new giant Crate & Barrel sectional.



  1. peggy
    01/04/2016 / 4:23 pm

    I was so intrigued by the subject of the book by Marie Kondo, that I found it on Amazon and purchased it for my kindle. I will certainly let you know how and if it affects my behavior(s)! I enjoy your spirit of adventure every time I read any of your additions to the insanity of today’s world. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  2. 01/05/2016 / 10:31 am

    I would buy the book but then that would be one more thing in my house SO I googled the hell out of that shit.
    So I am KonMari’ing the heck out of my house slowly and it feels WONDERFUL.
    Here’s to that stupid lash!

  3. Steven
    01/05/2016 / 5:26 pm

    If swearing doesn’t work, you know you are in deep guacamole! Learn to swear better!

  4. 01/10/2016 / 8:55 am

    I borrowed the tidying book from the library and I am on the list to get it again and now she has a new one coming out which I am also lined up for (I should buy them I suppose!). I need some purging and de-cluttering desperately, but I am the world’s worst person for the ‘oh, where is that so and so, I really need it’, when I threw the item out last week.
    You need to pop down to my house to help me!!!

    • 01/11/2016 / 11:24 am

      If I came to your house I’d just throw everything out, so I might be dangerous. I’m in this mode where I’m just wanting to get rif of everything except maybe a roll of masking tape and a cup. 🙂 I didn’t know she was coming out with a new book, but that’s pretty brilliant based on the success of this book.

  5. 01/11/2016 / 4:10 pm

    I heard that was a great book. I gifted it a hoarder that I know and love. By the way, have you seen how popular adult coloring books are now? I saw one in the checkout line at Wegmans!!

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