Humour me, folks! I could sing, “Aaj main upar, aasmaaan neecche!” Loosely translated, that means "Today I am on top of the world, with the sky beneath!" Maybe, the world will scoff at me when I divulge the reason.
I have finished sorting out my wardrobe, my linen cupboard and my kitchen drawers. I have decluttered… given away clothes that have miraculously grown smaller, chucked bedsheets that have blushed their colour away, and thrown away the condiments and masalas which have outlived their usefulness! I have ironed every item of clothing and every pillowcase I have! I am Marie Kondo today!
I was introduced to Marie Kondo around ten years back, when every article she wrote was like the gospel truth. “Ready to spark joy in your life?” she exhorted. “Give away everything you don’t love!” Of course, this statement has nothing to do with all the break-ups and divorces that followed soon after!
Anyway, there I was, handling every item at home with TLC, whispering to it, “I love you. I will hang on to you!” My husband rejoiced, hoping against hope that finally there would be some space for him at home. That I would declutter! That pigs would fly!
Thinking back, there must have been a magpie ancestor somewhere in my past whose blood ran in my veins, and whose voice echoed in my ears. “Keep it all. It might come in use one day.” How could I ignore a decisive voice like that?
So, every item would go right back, and Kondo would turn into ‘Can’t do!”
Today, however, I feel empowered. I gave away ten tops, all my husband’s T shirts (except the ones he clung on to in desperation!) and made enough space in my cupboard to fit in a hippopotamus. Not that I will ever need to, of course, but the feeling is euphoric. To make myself feel even better, I ironed everything I saw around me. I also discovered the truth of the quote, “You never know what you have until you clean your closet.”
Ironing has that calming effect on me. It is as though I am smoothening out the wrinkles in my life as well, one at a time. The smell of a freshly washed outfit when the steam hits it is uplifting. Rows of clothes in perfect harmony, T shirts rolled up (another Kondo technique!) and dupattas and scarves that cascade in perfect grace. “God’s in His heaven, and all’s right with the world.”
When after all that activity, I sit down to write, my heart is full. It is as if I have ironed out a wrinkle in time, a crease that troubled me and a whole space fraught with conflict. The words flow onto my screen with ease. The space without has created an equally serene space within.
The next space that needs tackling is our library, and all my writing paraphernalia. Every time I determine to give away two books for every one book I buy, I make an effort. Cross my heart, I really do! I look through my shelves at all those beautiful books, each one more alluring than the last, each one singing a separate song that leaps straight into my heart. I shake my head and move on to my diaries and notebooks. It is no secret that the way straight to my heart, besides music, is stationery of any kind – colourful notebooks, pens of every hue, pads and cards, Post-its in blue and pink and yellow, tiny calendars, handmade paper and cards of every kind. I have cards from the seventies given to me by my family and friends. Cards and letters from students later on in life! Some have turned yellow, others have got stuck with age, and the luckier ones are stuck down in an old drawing book. All I can say is that if I have survived to this ripe old age, so should they, and no argument about that!
‘Minimalistic’ seems to be the mantra today. I saw a video in which a lady said that she had seven set of clothes, one for each day of the week, a few accessories and little else. She mixed and matched so effectively that she could carry on life with the few choices she had. Another lady held out seven T shirts and three formal tops and trousers. In the short duration of the video, she made two piles of ‘keep’ and ‘trash’. Finally, she kept four T shirts and trashed three. According to me, that requires nerves of steel! Luckily, they both started their videos with the words, “Please do not try this at home!” OK, sorry, just joking!
Light TransitionsToday, I will sleep well, dreaming of clean wardrobes and ironed clothes. However, all this is going to change in a couple of days for I celebrated a birthday last week, and new clothes are all set to come in and nestle within those spaces that I have joyfully created. And believe me, I had no ulterior motive when I created them! Amen!
The Monday Campaigns
The Monday Campaigns