Background: Based on her 18 years of professional organizing experience, Jessica had been gently suggesting the clutter might be indicating rage and a little girl saying, "I don't wanna!!!"
Me: I really don't want to talk about it, but I want to at least respond to Jessica's gentle encouragement to come out of hiding and complete the last assignment in the 10-day de-cluttering challenge...Where I'm at right now...I don't want this to end. I'm really struggling with finishing clearing off my desk.
I did all the steps I had lined up except finishing filing and just clearing the rest of it off. I cleared out a lot of files to make room for new ones. And made sure to actually get the 6 bags of shredded stuff out into the recycling container at the curb--which is a big deal.
I was genuinely busy with other responsibilities the last few days, but did have a block of time set a side to deal with it yesterday and to read the last assignment carefully and complete it.
But I just felt so grumpy and resistant about it. I did some things this morning internally to try to work through that, but am now leaving the house until this evening. I want to show a picture of my desk all cleared off and tidy. I will.
Jessica: this is the nitty-gritty tough stuff, Marilyn BTW, grumpy and resistant is GOOD!! that means it's coming up and out for clearing
Me: I have to be around people all day today and I just don't feel like I can. I can't stop crying since I wrote that. I couldn't bring myself go into the church building just now. My husband said just take the keys and take this hour to do whatever you need to do--he suggested some forgiving. And now I can't stop thinking of my grandmothers funeral when I was 5 or 6. My great aunts holding me behind the a curtain at the funeral and me crying and one of them telling me, "don't cry" I felt so enraged by that. "I'm sad. Don't tell me not to cry." She died instantly when a drunk driver hit them on the way to church in the Sunday afternoon of Labor Day weekend. My grandfather survived in intensive care until her birthday which I just realized was yesterday. I remember telling my dad we had to help him. He has to come live with us. And then he died too. Then the next year I decided to "adopt" her sister who looked so much like her as my new grandmother. But then she died not long after that. So I attached to her other sister but decided not to consider her my new grandma so she wouldn't die too.
(BTW: as an adult I get that whoever told me not to cry was likely doing her very best in a difficult situation and not meaning to be unkind. I'm just acknowledging how that felt to me as a little girl.)
Jessica: oh, sweetie, please cry. And don't stop until the Thousand Uncried tears have flowed out
Me: It feels too intense to show. Too much to let it all hang out.
Me: My grandpa smoked. And I sucked my thumb. He told me he'd quit if I did. I kept putting it off. He died. I never quit completely (nighttime) until age 9 when the orthodontist's appliance kept me from being able to. I felt a lot of shame about sucking my thumb and not being able to quit.
This feels like TMI. Ohhhhhhhh
Me: Enough of it's out. I can go into worship now.
(a lot of tears in 1 hour, but then peace)
Jessica: I hope this is not offensive to you, but I truly believe the work you have been doing these last few days IS worship. It's not WHERE you honor God, it's HOW.
Me: I very much have been connecting with God through this journey. And though I didn't join my brethren for our Sunday morning Bible study this morning, I was pouring my heart out to God and am thankful His peace came over me in time to join them in our corporate worship. The sermon was the part B of last weeks on God's invitation to connect personally with Him. Such a fitting topic considering the Brene Brown Vulnerability TED talk you shared with us. So many things are coming together for me and I am thankful to God, to you and to the other ladies in this group!
When I arrived back home in the evening, it was easy to deal with the physical clutter and it felt really good to see the wood on my desk finally exposed--so much space created when it had been feeling like the chaos was caving in on me.
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