Thursday, September 17, 2009

a need, a project, an idea, a mission

In 15 years, I have lived in four states and eleven houses.

I've lived alone, with family members and soul mates, with lunatics and boyfriends, with friends and strangers and couch-surfers and pets.

Those spaces have ranged from scant (like the closet I called home in 1994) to ample (like the downtown loft I ran from in 2001).

I've collected things. I've created things. I've been given things. And I've packed them all in boxes and moved them, like checkers, from place to place, often without unpacking them at their next destination.

It's time for some housekeeping.

This house was my parents' house, until they were seduced by cleaner carpets, a bigger kitchen, and no adult children underfoot, and they got the heck out of here. My little sister stayed behind, and now the two of us share the house with her husband, three cats, a tiny dog, a fish, and 15 years of my life packed into boxes.

But not just boxes. Also trash bags, plastic trunks, frayed suitcases, and weird piles of weirdness.

Sentimental weirdness.

I've been avoiding the project (almost three years in this house, jockeying the boxes from room to room as we needed space), in part I think because I haven't wanted to be reminded of my "once-potential, squandered" and also because I am a sentimental sap and I'm not so sure I want to revisit all that history.

But I started today, and tonight, I had an idea: to help catalogue all the pieces and memories, and to help keep me from abandoning the project once started, I will write every day until all of the boxes are unpacked and their contents are organized, discarded, repurposed, or set aflame.

Let's hope there aren't very many spiders.


Rachel said...

Just found your blog today, realize you started this project a long long time ago. Truly a great idea. I may steal it.

jen scaffidi said...

Do it! The obligation to write about it helped me to really delve into some of it. In fact, I miss being unemployed, when it was easier to make time for these things. And there are still SO MANY boxes to go.