On the weekend, I discovered Cat Valente’s new tumblr project Girl Unlocked and the Unfuck your habitat tumblr and suddenly got inspired. Here was a successful woman talking about exactly the same shit I’m feeling and living and not doing.
Tansy has a great post today about it too – Mothering, Writing, Pilating, Guilt. I guess as I sit here, I can hardly feel hard done by by the feminist movement – I have a good professional day job with great prospects and entitlements. I’m respected by my manager and most of the people I work with, even if I am often still the lonely girl in the sea of men at the boardroom table. On top of that, I have my own small business that I started up and is mine. And I have a very loving, understanding and giving fiance. (The puppy is um … the puppy.) But you know, as much as that is possibly living some version of the feminist dream, I still can’t shake the expectations of the domestic goddess. I am a neat person and I appreciate order and neatness. I like my pantry to have everything stored by category and be in the neat tupperware containers. I like my clothes to be clean and folded and ironed and away and waiting for me to choose an outfit to wear. I want my house to be spick and span and ready for Vogue inspection without warning.
But that is in no way the reality. Working two jobs fulltime, plus a big commute these days, and trying to make time to care for myself by exercising properly and keep up with reading, and family and friends, and have downtime to recharge. Yeah, I don’t live the domestic goddess dream. I don’t have the time and it doesn’t happen. We go to bed with dishes in the sink, clothes unhung up. Puppy toys strewn across the house. Papers not filed and away. Mess. I wouldn’t give up any of my priorities to be the ideal housewife. But its really really hard to give up the guilt and feeling of coming short when judged on my (lack of) ability to keep house. I fear people dropping by and seeing how I live sometimes (and judging me). I stress myself out because this in no way gels with my OCD which is far more under control than several years ago but still present. I can’t let go of the guilt. And the mess weighs down on my psyche, adding to the white noise of background stress.
But what to do? Can’t create more time and if I could, Twelfth Planet Press already has dibs on it. And 2012 is already more frentic than 2011 was and I know 2013 will be likewise more than 2012. It’s just the way it is.
So this whole unfucking your habitat thing kind of appeals to me. I guess in the same way that the 12 week body transformation is working for me. Basically, fucking off excuses – excuses for why you didn’t or can’t do shit are bullshit. There is only do or do not, you know? And there is mostly the suck it up princess and get on with it. I like Cat’s attitude on her tumblr. I also like seeing before and after shots of tidying. So I’m kinda jumping on the bandwagon and will try and get small things unfucked when I can and keep them unfucked from there on out. And I’ll post some photos as I do.
So these three photos to the left and above are of my dressing table. Which has basically looked like the top shot for most of the time I’ve lived here (since moving in last June). The chest is a bit high for me to actually use for dressing but I really love the wood and the deal with myself on buying it when I did (plantation wood) is I have it for life. But um yes, it was totally untidy, unfriendly workspace and facing my bed. So I both cannot find any of the lovely makeup and jewellery I own (and therefore have not been using or wearing) and stare at the clutter pretty much all the time. I realised I could actually take one of the drawers for my makeup and also use one of my lovely boxes that I love to collect but have no purpose for to lay it all out in an easy, enticing and accessible way. I actually like to wear a little makeup and some jewellery, it makes me feel good about myself. But I don’t when I don’t feel good about myself or when I have to hunt around to find it. (Of note, haven’t worn a lot of either in recent years).
And now my bedside table. A great source of annoyance to anyone else who shares a room with me. I like to take glasses and mugs to bed to drink whilst reading but I don’t like to return items back to the kitchen. I let things pile up til either something spills or I have nowhere to put my glasses when I finally go to sleep. Seriously, I don’t know how that’s a bad habit of mine when I actually am naturally neat person. Honest!
I spose it comes from now having an actual office that I work at. Though, ahem, we do have a study here and I do have my own desk. Yes said desk is absolutely covered in clutter, things to file, sort and whatnot. I spose those before and after shots will be coming soon!
Tags: decluttering, life