Tidy: chapter 1 – the universe is speaking…

January 21, 2016 at 10:32 am 2 comments

life-changing-magicThe Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Really? The book has been sitting on her kitchen table for a month. Underneath a pair of socks, a pile of home decor magazines, and Francis, the one-eared cat who adopted her last winter after Sam left. Her mother gave her the book for her 45th birthday. “It’ll change your life.” Mom likes to buy people books for their birthdays. Books like The Rules, Getting To I Do and Upgrading your Wardrobe for Dummies. “But this book is different,” says mom. “The writer is Japanese. Did you know that Japanese women don’t experience menopause? It’s because their culture respects older women. And their diets are cleaner. And the women feel supported and nourished and valued. The women are so graceful. You should read it.” She knows she should read it. Everyone’s reading it. It’s on the best sellers list. It changes people’s lives!

change

She imagines that after reading this magical book, people are born anew to their life’s purpose. They are greeted by previously hidden gifts and talents like long lost lovers. Motivation, inspiration and courage rain down from the skies above. Soul mates come knocking at doors. Infertility begets fertility. Empty bank accounts overflow with plenitude. Drones drop flowers and wine, and the world sparkles just a wee bit brighter as houses, hogans and even the homeless got their tidy on. Tidy for president. Tidy for world peace. Tidy for you, and you, and you. But not for me. Margaret has never been a tidy person. She may love to look at pictures of sparkling clean kitchens full of color and light, living rooms with inviting fireplaces or spa-like bathrooms promising relaxation and rejuvenation, but if she can’t get herself to do the dishes, how is she going to declutter her house?

Tidy 1 colorful kitchen

Modwalls Ceramic Tile: The Magnificent 7

She stares at the book and takes a sip of the coffee her friend Toni calls crack because it’s so strong. It’s her second cup of crack this morning and she’s liking it. She’s thinking she’ll drink crack all day and maybe the dishes will get done. Or the laundry. Or repot the plant, or maybe throw it away and get a new one – one that’s actually alive.  Or regrout the bathtub, or go jogging, or paint the front door red – that’s supposed to be good feng shui, right? Or do that pilatesyogacrossfit video that she’s been meaning to do. Or. Or. Or.

feelings street sign

Francis looks at her and meows but nothing comes out of his mouth. It’s one of those silent meows. This is how Margaret experiences the universe, or God, or intuition, or whatever people call it.  Silent. A silent meow. Yet expectant. It reminds her of the lyric from the Pink Floyd song, “Comfortably Numb”: “Your lips move, but I can’t hear what you’re saying.” She looks at Francis. Does Francis know?  Does Francis understand? Does Francis see that Margaret is paralyzed in a house she inherited from her mother? Her mother who died last winter. Her mother who knew how to get things done; who said before she closed her radiant eyes for the last time, ‘Make this house your home. Start your life. Stop waiting.’  Frances meows silently again. Maybe Francis is just hungry. Margaret reaches over and picks him up. He purrs. She looks down at the book as her mother’s words echo in her mind. She opens the first page and reads: “Start by discarding.”Micheline

Micheline Auger is a New York-based writer who loves color, cats and all things Modwalls. This is the first installment in a weekly series.

Entry filed under: at home, de clutter, fiction, interior design, story, tidying up, Uncategorized. Tags: , , , , , , .

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Rebecca Lonergan


Founder and Creative Director of Modwalls Tile Company. Since 2005 Rebecca has been designing Fresh Tile in Colors You Crave. Shop Online at Modwalls.com.

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