Monday, October 04, 2010

In which she turns little things into bigger questions

Kurt and I switched bedrooms over the weekend. Actually the switch is still going on. The dining room table is loaded with stuff that came out of his closet. His desk, which he doesn't want any more, is still in my room. It turns into a trapezoid when pulled out of the corner. The rectangular piece of heavy cardboard that's supposed to hold it square has mostly come away from the edges. Angle irons, I'm thinking, from the hardware store. But I'll have to find the power screwdriver first. My sewing machines and the storage units that go with it are in the living room and the dining room. And meanwhile, here at my desk, last Saturday's cleaning operation was interrupted halfway through by my niece's car accident. (Nobody hurt, but she had Eliza in the car, so off I went.)

So the house is not just cluttered or messy. It's completely out of sorts. I'm very tolerant of clutter--in fact, I need to see things out, not put away. But this is too much. Until I get it all sorted out, I don't know exactly how to live. And I won't get it all sorted out for a couple weeks, because I have to figure out how to wake up in a new space, how not to head upstairs to change clothes, where to knit and watch TV, where to knit and prop a book.

Is this a sign of age? Being such a creature of habit? I'm not against new habits. I just don't want to do the work of figuring out what they should be. It's just like figuring out what to wear these days, after losing 30-plus pounds over the summer. None of the old solutions work. I've bought new clothes. Moving closets forced me to weed out much of the too-big stuff yesterday. But how will it all work? How will it all end? Why am I here? Where am I going? And as my high school German teacher used to say, "Wo kommt es alle zu ende?"

It's not quite like what Jesus said about leaving mother and father and husband and wife behind. But still.

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