By Guest Blogger, Carolyn Cook.
I’m risking making space in my life for the present.
I was inspired by Debbie Kerr’s recent post about cleaning out her closet. I have a lot of stuff in my house right now. Much of it came from the homes of my mother and mother-in-law. Their extra belongings filled our extra space, as we eased their journeys into assisted living.
It’s time to begin digging out from under the clutter we accumulated.
My husband is working on an estate sale for his mom, and I’m slowly taking inventory of my own clutter, before I even deal with my mother’s.
Recently I gave some lovely pieces of clothing to a theatre costume shop. The gift included two gorgeous pairs of shoes that had been my grandmother’s, that I had worn occasionally and really loved. There was also a nice business suit that was just a bit too small for me. (It had been too small even when I bought it. Wishful thinking made me believe I’d lose five pounds.) All of it was beautiful, and all of it represented a part of my life that I had held onto longer than I needed to.
As I let go of those clothes, I heard myself telling the costumers that I hoped they’d be useful in a play, because they didn’t belong in my life. They were reminders of who I’m not anymore, and I’ve decided to be who I am now.
Let somebody else be who I used to be.
I realized that I was only able to let go of those things because I’ve started shifting my thinking, very slowly, toward an appreciation of the present. The words “be here now” are the best advice I know of, as I seek to live peacefully within my changing emotional landscape. I have so much to be grateful for, when I stop and pay attention to it all.
Letting the past be the past, and not burdening the future with my worries: those are my risks for today.
This post first appeared on True Voices’ RiskADay blog, a project, which has now concluded.
Carolyn Cook is a sometimes peaceful, sometimes frazzled individual who works to raise a daughter, build a marriage, and explore the human condition through theatre, art, music, history, literature, and relationship. You can now read about her life and insights at her own blog here.