Tuesday, June 2, 2015

The Truth of Spring Cleaning

While it is almost summer, I am still bogged down with the whole spring cleaning process. Whoever started this process must have had a small closet and no hobbies, and was obviously able to drink copious amounts of wine throughout the process. My closet is bleeding with my various hobbies, each stuffed in separate totes.  I can never understand that all the stuff I threw away the past year seems to be reincarnated to the stuff I need to throw out this year. How did I look at this year's trash as last year's gems? It's a never-ending quandary that will likely never be answered. I've made peace with that.

As I've started on the archaeological dig into my closet's piles of totes and boxes, I have a lawn bag ready for my former necessary unnecessariables (my word.) My first tote was a treasure chest of old journals.  They serve two purposes. I write down all my meds each day along with any medical issues that are going on. It keeps me on target. It also enables me report to my doctors exactly what's going on at any given time. It's become an empowering tool that helps me have some control of my health and helps guide my doctors and I to make the best decisions for my health. I highly recommend this to anyone with chronic health issues.

Then there is my spiritual cleansing, aka my writing. It has a Tourette's Syndrome-type personality whereby I may not write for weeks, and then one day I get a surge of ideas and I grab whatever is closest to me. I've got napkins, matchbooks, receipts, etc., but I usually grab my journals.  I write down those thoughts, keeping them safe in something I won't throw away. It's a journey through history to read those scraps of my heart in writing.

So there I sat going through perhaps the smallest tote in my closet. I often discard the medical info after a certain amount of time, and I keep only my writing spasms. The first journal I opened was from 2010  when I had a very major surgery. The words I read brought tears to my eyes. The writing was beautiful (if I do say so myself) and raw and overwhelming. I could almost feel the physical and emotional pain I was going through at that time. It took me back like a time machine, giving me a view of Jessica then vs. Jessica now.

 I read some of it to my mom, and she replied, "It's so good, but so dark.  That's not who you are now."

That was so validating to hear. The words sounded like someone I used to know wrote them. A familiar stranger. There I was digging through my closet, and I found old bones from an old me. An ancient text about things long passed. That's not to say everything is peachy keen now, but I feel that I'm in a better place spiritually and emotionally. There are changes in my life that have allowed me to heal peacefully rather than stressfully. Healing has various degrees of stress, but it's the where and the who you're healing around that can make a big difference. Different doctors are amazing gifts, too.

Healing is a puzzle that takes time. Reading about where I was compared to where I am now was so cathartic. It took the term "spring cleaning" to another level. We all go through stuff that is hard and life-changing. Everyone has different ways of holding onto the feelings surrounding those times.
You don't have to have journals or thoughts written down. There is a wardrobe of reactions and thoughts most people have within them.

Within your spirit, examine those things that no longer serve your greater good and let them go. Stick them in that figurative trash bag and toss them out. Purge yourself of that which weighs you down with negativity. It's a new day. The lessons you learned from those experiences have already been woven into your souls. Clean your mind and heart of the baggage. Eventually we all have to accept our perfect imperfections and give ourselves permission to be loved just as we are. It's not likely to happen all at once, but in pieces as we go.

 A counselor once told me not to view life as a linear process, but rather as a web-like journey. On that same note, every movement on the web will offer a time to heal past hurts and to love ourselves wherever, however and whoever we are. In truth, spring cleaning is just a convenient analogy for an ongoing process. Granted, I started writing this in early May, yet just finishing it in early June. So my cleansing is retroactive but progressing, one day at a time.